EU renews its climate diplomacy push

EU foreign affairs ministers agreed today to put climate objectives at heart of EU security and foreign policies. CAN Europe welcomes the initiative and calls on EU diplomats to lead the fight to achieve deeper emission cuts to limit warming to below 1.5°C in line with the Paris Agreement. Ministers stressed the need to “reinvigorate EU Climate Diplomacy, taking into account the latest developments and changing geopolitical landscape”. The aim of this new diplomatic offensive is to support implementation of the Paris Agreement, translate climate pledges into action in all sectors of economy and highlight positive economic impact of the low-carbon transition. EU diplomats want to focus their efforts in G20 countries

Read more

Smart Electricity Meters: Europe Emerges as Key Regional Market

Government regulation-fuelled rollout drives new growth opportunities, finds Frost & Sullivan’s Energy & Environment team Regulation-fuelled rollouts of smart electricity meters are driven by the potential to reduce non-technical losses for electricity utilities, improve billing accuracy, and effectively integrate renewable energy with smart meters. With these rollouts, Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) are emerging as key regional smart electricity meter markets ahead of North America, while Asia-Pacific will become the second-largest market in the next 10 years. “In a highly competitive and commoditised market with little product innovation, leading players such as Landis+Gyr, Itron, Wasion and Hexing are pursuing price differentiation strategies and offering a complete technology solution,”

Read more

EU Energy Council debates Clean Energy package and State of the Energy Union

The European Energy Council, which brings together EU Energy Ministers, European Commission Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič, and European Commissioner for energy and climate action Miguel Arias Cañete, will meet in Brussels today. Two main items are on the agenda: the Commission’s ‘Clean Energy for All Europeans’ package and its second State of the Energy Union report. At the Council meeting, EU energy ministers will discuss the Commission’s ‘Clean Energy for All Europeans’ package of measures, which was released on 30 November 2016. The measures aim to ensure that Europe leads the world’s transition to clean energy: they focus on putting energy efficiency first, achieving global leadership in renewable energies, and providing

Read more

Energy consumption in the EU below its 1990 level but EU dependence on fossil fuel imports on the rise

Gross energy consumption in the European Union, reflecting the amount of energy needed to meet EU domestic demand, was the lowest level since 1990, although fossil fuels remain “by far” their main source of supply . According to data published by the EU statistical office Eurostat, the EU consumed in 2015 the equivalent of 1,626 million tonnes of oil, a decrease of 2.5% over 1990 and a fall of 11.6% over the recorded peak In 2016. However, almost three-quarters of that energy still comes from fossil fuels (73%), although that chapter also fell from 83% in 1990, Eurostat said. In the same period, imports of this type of energy increased

Read more

EU invests €444 million in key energy infrastructure

Today EU Member States agreed on the Commission’s proposal to invest €444 million in key European energy infrastructure projects. Today EU Member States agreed on the Commission’s proposal to invest €444 million in priority European energy infrastructure projects. The 18 selected electricity, smart grids and gas projects will contribute to achieving the Energy Union‘s goals by connecting European energy networks, increasing security of energy supply, and contributing to the sustainable development by integrating renewable energy sources across the EU. The Energy Union strategy has at its centre the transition to a low-carbon, and secure and competitive economy. Properly interconnected electricity lines and gas pipelines form the backbone of an integrated

Read more

The EU will invest 6.2 million euros in electrical interconnections between Spain and France

The European Union will invest 6.2 million euros to carry out a study on electrical interconnections between the French region of Aquitaine and the community of the Basque Country, as announced by the European Commission on Friday. The money will go to an additional study of the project “Gulf of Biscay”, said the Community Executive, which integrates the funding of this initiative within a total program of € 444 million investment in energy infrastructure in the EU as a whole Has received the approval of the Member States. The Vice-President of the EC and European Commissioner for Energy Union, Maros Sefcovic, in a statement stressed the importance of such projects

Read more

Europe adds 12.5 GW of new wind capacity in 2016 with record €27.5bn in new investments

Wind accounted for 51% of all new power installations in 2016, connecting a total of 12.5 GW to the grid across the 28 EU Member States – 10.923 MW in onshore and 1,567 MW offshore. Total wind capacity in Europe now stands at 153.7 GW. Wind energy covered 10.4% of Europe’s electricity needs last year.  Germany installed the most new wind power: 44% of the EU total.  Five Member States had a record year: France, the Netherlands, Finland, Ireland and Lithuania. Renewables altogether accounted for 86% of new EU power plant installations in 2016 – 21.1GW of 24.5 GW. Investment in new onshore and offshore wind farms reached a record

Read more

EU countries oppose duty extension on Chinese solar panels

A majority of EU countries yesterday (26 January) opposed a European Commission plan to extend anti-dumping duties on Chinese solar panels for two years, according to EU diplomats, putting pressure on the EU executive to review its proposal. The duties in question will not necessarily end because the 18 countries that voted against them do not represent a majority of the EU’s population, falling short of the blocking “qualified majority”. The case will now go to an appeal committee, also including representatives from the EU’s 28 member states. The majority view could also pressure the Commission to review its proposal. The EU governments did back a two-year extension of tariffs

Read more

WindEurope launches a digital platform to know the wind energy produced in Europe

At an event held at the company’s headquarters where the European Union’s Energy Union Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič was present, WindEurope presented a unique digital platform that shows the real-time wind energy generated in Europe. The platform called Daily Wind Power Numbers will report daily to energy policy makers, industry players and citizens on: What wind energy supposes over total electricity demand in Europe List of countries with the highest volume of wind energy generated. The most productive hours and the productive power of each country The information on the Daily Wind Power Numbers platform comes from 13,000 data points obtained from transmission system operators, power stations, Eurostat and WindEurope statistics.

Read more

Banks give €1 billion to build “Smart Europe”

By Janie Matthews | EURACTIV.com Investors and the banking community have agreed to pour €1 billion into the modernisation and digitalisation of Europe, Committee of the Regions President Markku Markkula said today (7 February). “We’re in a long sunset of the second industrial revolution,” American economist and social theorist Jeremy Rifkin commented during a Commission conference on building a smarter, more sustainable Europe. The event, hosted by the European Committee of the Regions, saw Markkula, Rifkin and Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič converse about growth in cities and regions through innovation. According to Rifkin, “smart cities” are essential to combating climate change. Rifkin said the transition to a more digitalised and modernised “smart

Read more