The European Commission today presented its 'Energy 2020 strategy', setting out the strategic vision of the Commission in energy policy (1). Green MEPs have criticised the strategy as being deceiving and based on flawed analysis. Commenting on the proposals, Greens/EFA energy spokesperson and Luxembourg MEP Claude Turmes said:
"Today's proposals, which represent the Commission's first major strategy initiative in the area of energy policy, are deceiving and demonstrate a shocking pro-nuclear bias. The strategy is based on flawed analysis and regrettably seeks to downplay the role of energy efficiency and renewable energy in the EU energy sector.
"Energy efficiency and savings must be a central plank of EU energy policy if the EU is to achieve its energy security and climate goals. Yet the Commission only vaguely deals with this core issue and would seem to prefer delaying win-win measures that could be implemented now. With regard to renewable energy, the Commission ignores its own analysis, which indicates that renewables will account for 65% of all power sector investments in the EU over the next 10 years (2). Instead, this crucial power source is effectively dismissed in the 2020 strategy and will not get any support in the area of export markets, despite being one of the main EU sectors with export growth potential.
"The Commission seems to fawningly accept the market dominance of the big (German) energy oligopolies, with no measures planned to address this damaging distortion. It fails to deal with the elephant in the room: namely how to wean Europe of its damaging addiction to fossil fuels. As if this weren't enough, the Commission also tries to present nuclear power as a boon for EU consumers, ignoring the major cost issues with nuclear power, not to mention the outstanding concerns with safety and nuclear waste. This is nothing short of an insult."
(1) The 2020 energy strategy will be discussed by EU energy ministers at their council meeting in December and also serve as input for the EU Heads of State summit on energy on 4 February 2011.
(2) PRIMES reference scenario, by European Commission, October 2010. Click for overview of EU energy investments based on PRIMES scenario.