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SLACK EFFICIENCY TARGET WILL FAIL TO SECURE EUROPE’S ENERGY FUTURE


Claus Bugge Garn, VP and energy efficiency expert, at ROCKWOOL International A/S: “Europe’s energy future is at a crossroads. It might seem obvious that Europe would desire more economic growth and jobs, lower energy imports and costs, less energy poverty, and even less CO2. Energy efficiency can deliver all that cost effectively, but when it comes to actions and to setting the ambition level for 2030 then now is the last-minute call for political leadership.”
In just two weeks, the European Council of Ministers will decide on its 2030 energy savings target. The European Parliament has already voted in favour of a binding 40% energy savings target for 2030. But this summer, the European Commission proposed to lower the energy savings target to just 30%, yet even the European Commission’s own impact assessment has shown that an even higher energy savings target can deliver many more benefits; including energy security, reduction of energy import dependency, more jobs and greater GDP growth.
Claus Bugge Garn says: “There is overwhelming evidence that Europe can reduce its energy consumption cost effectively by 40% by 2030, but most of this potential is left unrealised. I strongly urge more governments to insist on securing Europe’s energy future. A meagre 30% target is less economical and will provide fewer jobs and less energy security than a 40% target.”
Today, buildings are the biggest energy consumer using around 40% of the energy in the EU, but 2/3 of this energy could be saved cost effectively. By doubling the rate of energy efficient building modernisations to 3% per year the energy consumption in buildings could be reduced by 80% by 2050.
Claus Bugge Garn, VP and energy efficiency expert, at ROCKWOOL International A/SClaus Bugge Garn: “This may seem afar, but we are building our future today and there is no time to waste. Market barriers are preventing it from happening by itself. A binding target of 40% energy savings by 2030 must be set and met if we are to keep the leading position that Europe has had on energy efficiency in the past. Now is the time for politicians to kick start an era of ambitious yet achievable energy saving measures that benefit the European economy and the quality of life for its citizens. If we miss this critical opportunity to drive energy savings in the coming decade, our energy security will become even worse, billions of euros will be go up in smoke, and job creation will remain slack and inadequate.”
About the conference ‘Securing Europe’s Energy Future’

The EU Council of Ministers will convene and make its final decision on 23-24 October.
The Economist and European Voice are co-hosting the European Energy Summit in Brussels, 8 October 2014 to debate the challenges and opportunities of an unpredictable and changing market.

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