EP puts energy efficiency and renewables at the centre EU energy strategy
The European Parliament today adopted a report setting out its opinion on the EU's energy strategy up to 2020 (Kollarska report). The Greens broadly welcomed the report, which calls for EU energy strategy to prioritise renewable energy and energy efficiency, while addressing the flaws in the EU energy market. However, Green MEPs regretted proposals on shale gas and nuclear licensing. After the vote, Green energy spokesperson Claude Turmes said:
"The EP has today set out a viable path for the EU energy sector, calling for energy efficiency and renewable energy to be at the heart of the EU's energy strategy over the next decade. MEPs have also underlined the need to address the continuing flaws in the functioning of the EU energy market. This is a necessary antidote to the flawed and biased strategy presented by EU energy commission Oettinger a fortnight ago.
"The EU already has much of the regulatory framework in place but there needs to be a greater focus on implementation. The report adopted today underlines the need to speed up investments in renewable energy to ensure the EU meets its mandatory target of 20% renewable energy by 2020. It also makes clear that new conventional coal plants are not in Europe's interest.
"Leading on green energy investments will help the EU address its climate and energy security challenges, but it is also the only way to compete with US, China and other Asian countries. The Greens call on the Commission to use its upcoming communication on financing renewables to come up with new ideas how the EU budget could be used to lower the capital costs of certain renewables investments.
"Regrettably, the report makes overly positive assumptions about the role of shale gas, ignoring major environmental concerns. The call for EU licensing for nuclear reactors is also wrongheaded and raises security concerns. For these reasons, the Greens abstained in the final vote on the report."