European Commission - Press release
Strong impetus to energy savings and energy efficiency
Brussels, 22 June 2011 - The cheapest energy is the one we do not consume. The counting down has started to achieve Europe's 20% energy efficiency target for 2020. If nothing changes in the coming years, the EU will achieve only half of the target. This threatens our competitiveness, our fight to reduce CO2 emissions and our security of supply. This is still a high cost for every consumer's bill. A new set of measures for increased Energy Efficiency is proposed today by the European Commission to fill the gap and put back the EU on track. This proposal for this new directive brings forward measures to step up Member States efforts to use energy more efficiently at all stages of the energy chain – from the transformation of energy and its distribution to its final consumption.
"Our proposal aims at making the way we use energy in our daily life more efficient and at helping citizens, public authorities and the industry to better manage their energy consumption, which should also lead to a reduced energy bill. It also creates an important potential for new jobs throughout the EU "said Günther Oettinger, European Commissioner responsible for Energy.
In a nutshell, the Commission proposes simple but ambitious measures:
The Commission's proposal follows the latest calls for action by the European Council (4th February 2011), Energy Council (10th June 2011) and European Parliament to achieve the objective to reduce by 20% the EU's anticipated energy consumption for 2020. Latest estimates made by the Commission, taking into account the national energy efficiency targets for 2020 that Member States have set for themselves in the context of the Europe 2020 strategy, show that the EU is still far from being able to achieve its objective.
To meet this challenge, the European Commission has first put forward, on 8 March 2011, a new Energy Efficiency Plan proposing a range of energy efficiency measures to be implemented throughout all economic sectors to achieve further energy savings. This plan has been warmly welcomed by the Energy Council and the European Parliament.
Today, the Commission presents the legislative proposal for a Directive on energy efficiency which transforms into binding measures many of the key actions proposed in this Energy Efficiency Plan. It builds upon the existing Directives for Cogeneration and Energy Services1 and merges them into one comprehensive legal instrument addressing energy efficiency in energy supply and in final energy consumption.
The Directive also foresees that the Commission will make in 2014 an assessment of the progress made towards the EU's 20% energy efficiency objective for 2020 and, if necessary, bring forward a further legislative proposal to set mandatory national energy efficiency targets.
For more information:
The Energy Efficiency Directive:
See also MEMO/11/440.
Directives 2004/8/EC on cogeneration and 2006/32/EC on energy end-use efficiency and energy services