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European Commission


Brussels, 14 June 2012

Commissioner Günther Oettinger welcomes political agreement on the Energy Efficiency Directive

"This is a big step ahead: for the very first time we have legally binding energy efficiency measures. Europe is now much better placed to achieve its 20% energy efficiency target for 2020", Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger stated.

"The measures will reduce our energy bill while generating further growth and jobs. They stimulate investments and make our energy using products more efficient."

"The European Parliament and the Council have played a constructive role in finding a compromise. It also shows Europe's ability to act in difficult economic times."

Yesterday evening, the European Parliament, the Council and the EU Commission reached a political agreement on the Energy Efficiency Directive. Today, Coreper endorsed the agreement. European Parliament and the Council still need to give their approval.


The cheapest energy is the one we do not consume. The countdown to achieve Europe's 20% energy efficiency target for 2020 has started. Without the Energy Efficiency Directive, Europe would only achieve approximately 10 % out of 2020. With the legally binding measures introduced by the energy efficiency directive, it is estimated that the EU could reach approximately 17 %.

The Energy Efficiency directive brings forward legally binding 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. These include:

  • the legal obligation to establish energy efficiency obligations schemes or policy measures in all member states to drive energy efficiency improvements in households, industries and transport sectors,

  • an exemplary role to be played by the public sector,

  • a right for consumers to know how much energy they consume,

  • to encourage energy audits for SMEs and households and an obligation for large companies to assess their energy savings possibilities,

  • increased efficiency in energy generation, transmission and distribution.

Improved energy efficiency will help the EU economy to be more competitive, and create growth and up to 400 000 additional jobs.

Further information

The Directive on Energy Efficiency can be found here

Commission web page on Energy Efficiency:

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