Businesses, society and Public Administration agree on the opportunities derived from an ambitious energy transition

The joint debate organised by the Grupo Español para el Crecimiento Verde (GECV) and the European Alliance to Save Energy (EU-ASE) ratifies the business, NGOs, academia and Public Administration’s support to an ambitious and stable climate and energy legislative framework

The debate, moderated by Mónica López, Head of the Meteorological Service of Spanish public TV TVE, started with a welcome address by Antoni Ballabriga, Global Director of Responsible Business at BBVA, and was later on introduced by EU-ASE President Monica Frassoni and José López-Tafall, GECV Secretary General. López-Tafall stated that “it is possible to decarbonise and grow at the same time, it is economically viable”, while Frassoni underlined that we should bet on decarbonising the economy and reminded the audience of the urgency of a clear, ambitious and just roadmap.

José Manuel González-Páramo, Head of Global Economics, Regulation and Public Affairs at BBVA, who also took part in the debate, reminded the attendants that, according to the European Commission, we still lack €180,000 in additional annual investment if we want to reach the energy and climate objectives set for 2030. He also highlighted BBVA’s commitment with climate change and the key role businesses play.

Hugo Morán, Spanish Secretary for Environment, highlighted the great work EU-ASE and GECV are doing by organising this type of initiatives and pointed out that “mitigation is not synonym to deindustrialistion and adaptation doesn’t mean resignation”. He also underlined the importance of the future Climate and Energy legislation, that will guarantee that Spain complies with the goals set by the European Union and the Paris Agreement. Morán argued that “the setting of a stable regulatory framework, with adequate incentives and that fosters the necessary investments taking into account the market reality, is key to achieve a successful transition“.

Director General for Energy at the European Commission, Dominique Ristori, started his intervention stating that the new regulatory framework for energy and climate proposed by the Spanish Government is an opportunity for all, both businesses and investors. Ristori said that it is necessary to show clear leadership at the national level to address the energy transition, that has become a priority. Such leadership, he told the audience, should be based on three pillars – a clear and predictable regulatory framework, business opportunity, and access to sustainable financing. He also underlined that organising this type of initiatives is both important and timely, as they seek to create positive synergies between national and European authorities and what he defined as new business.

The session concluded with a round-table debate between representatives from different business sectors, NGOs and Public Administration, with speakers from EU-ASE members Danfoss and Knauf Insulation, as well as from Iberdrola, WWF Spain, the Institute for the Diversification and Saving of Energy (IDAE), and the Spanish Office for Cliamte Change (OECC). Ernesto Ubieto, President of Southern Europe Region at Danfoss, underlined the important role governments have to play for placing energy efficiency at the centre of the implementation and transposition of the European clean energy legislation and, especially, with regards to the EED and EPBD. Óscar del Río, General Manager at Knauf Insulation Iberia, stated that “without the Public Administration we cannot advance in tackling the challenges we face. “Businesses are ready to play their part; public administration needs to lean on us more”, he said. Joan Herrera, Director of IDAE, claimed that “we cannot allow ourselves [Spain] to be rich in resources and poor in political drive and ambition. We need regulation”, while Valvanera Ulargui, Director of the OECC, stated that “once we are all aware of climate change and the energy transition, the moment has come to take action and generate actual facts and data”. Ulargui pointed out that this is the message they would take to the upcoming COP24, “with a message of ambition and, especially, urgency”, she said.

Both the Grupo Español para el Crecimiento Verde and the European Alliance to Save Energy (EU-ASE) consider the debate, celebrated in the prelude of the presentation of the Climate Change Law draft, was crucial to convey the message to the Spanish Government that a big part of the Spanish business sector clearly supports the energy transition and the implementation of a national and European regulatory framework that is strong and leverages the necessary investments for achieving the change of economic model and of paradigm.


 

More information:

lauraj.bole@euase.eu

+34 693616088

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Swift implementation of EED, crucial for decarbonising the energy intensive industries

The European Alliance to Save Energy’s President, Monica Frassoni, participated yesterday at the 6th Annual High-Level Conference of the European Innovation Partnership (EIP) on Raw Materials, part of the Raw Materials Week organised by the European Commission. She took part in the session “Raw materials for clean energy intensive industries of the future”, Chaired by Mr Peter Handley, Head of Unit for Resource Efficiency and Raw Materials at DG GROW, and accompanied by Marco Mensink (CEFIC), Thomas Bünger (Aurubis AG), and Giles Dickinson (Wind Europe).

The session aimed at addressing the challenges faced by European core energy intensive industries – such as manufacture of chemicals, iron and steel – in the road towards a low-carbon and circular economy by 2050, relevant in view of the EU’s 2050 low emission strategy required by 2020 under the Paris Agreement.

During her intervention, Ms Frassoni underlined that the EU needs to take prompt action towards decarbonisation, especially after the IPCC published its latest report last month. She reminded the audience that, in terms of costs and action needed, the difference between 1.5ºC and 2ºC is vague and gives space for action, but also that we are behind schedule. For EU-ASE, she remarked, it is crucial that actions are taken “to avoid the climate catastrophe”, and she underlined two core lines of action: synergies between EE and RES, and phasing out of fossil fuels.

Ms Frassoni also addressed the crucial importance of making energy efficiency central to any current and future planning in the intensive industry sector. She underlined that energy efficiency is key in the electrification of the sector as, as she pointed out, “without being efficient and reducing its energy output, the industry will not be able to make it”. “Two thirds of the economic potential of EE remain untapped. The industry is the one that performs best, but energy intensive industries are also important for transport, energy generation and buildings”, she added.

The targets we have now are not particularly ambitious,

but together, recently adopted EED, EPBD and GovReg can deliver results“.

 

Monica Frassoni, EU-ASE President

She remarked that there are many solutions, the most important a good implementation of the Energy Efficiency Directive and the Governance of the Energy Union Regulation, approved by the European Parliament last 13 November. “The targets we have now are not particularly ambitious, but together, recently adopted EED, EPBD and GovReg can deliver results”, she added, “the actual, practical implementation of the legislative framework will be able to unlock industrial and production processes”.

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The Italian building stock – Strategic sector for Energy Efficiency in the country

Last 19th October, EU-ASE’s President Monica Frassoni took part in Kyoto Club’s event in Rome “The Italian real estate: a strategic infrastructure at the service of the country’s energy system”, where she participated on a panel together with Francesco Ferrante (Kyoto Club’s Vice-President), Lorenzo Pagliano (Professor at Politecnico de Milano), Alberto Mario Ermelli Cupelli (Manager of International Relations at Knauf Insulation Italia), Alessandro Carettoni (DG for Climate and Energy at Italian Environment Ministry), and Paolo Curati (Managing Director at Knauf Insulation Italia).

Frassoni outlined how the new EU energy efficiency framework can promote the energy retrofit of buildings, and called on the Italian Government for increased earmarking and climate mainstreaming in next MFF post-2020 to incentivise private investments in the building sector.

“Like it or not energy efficiency is key to decarbonise the European Union”

 

Monica Frassoni, EU-ASE President

During her intervention, she also addressed EU-ASE’s main points, pointing out that energy efficiency is key to decarbonising the EU, that improvements made in energy efficiency mean more energy security and less dependence on gas imports, ant that the EED targets are not a goal, but a starting point for national transposition.

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Energy efficiency at the center of 10th Citizens’ Energy Forum in Dublin

The EU-ASE President Monica Frassoni attended the 10th Citizens’ Energy Forum, which was launched by the European Commission in 2008 as a dedicated platform to implement and enforce consumer rights on the energy market across the European Union.

Organised annually, the Forum has served to structure the debate and channel consumers’, regulators’ and industry’s views on the energy market and its future, directly feeding into the work of the Commission in the energy and consumer policy areas. This year’s forum aimed at placing the discussion on the role of consumers on the energy market in the context of the measures proposed by the Clean Energy for all Europeans package and the recently adopted New Deal for Consumers package.

“Citizens need to be involved to ensure a transparent discussion on the choices that are being made when it comes to decisions between investing in new infrastructure or more retrofitting.”

 

Monica Frassoni, EU-ASE President

The opening session started with the speech of Dominique Ristori (DG ENER) which was followed by Denis Naughten (Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment), Miguel Arias Cañete (European  Union’s Commissioner for Climate Action & Energy) and  Sean Kelly (MEP), who agreed that the on-going negotiations and the implementation of the Clean Energy Package should keep focus on placing the empowered consumers at the center of the energy transition.

 

EU-ASE President Monica Frassoni was invited to take part in the High-level discussion on “The Role of consumers in the energy transition”, together with Michael Losch (Ministry of Sustainability and Tourism, Austria), Garrett Blaney (CEER), Monique Goyens (BEUC) and Kristian Ruby (Eurelectric), and moderated by Dominique Ristori (DG ENER).

During her intervention, Ms Frassoni stressed the importance of the inclusion of the energy efficiency first principle in the Regulation of the Governance of the Energy Union as a key novel element that will help ensure that the consumers are able to play an active role in the energy transition. “Energy efficiency first is not a PR concept, but a principle that should guide the implementation and investment decisions” she emphasized.

“Citizens need to be involved to ensure a transparent discussion on the choices that are being made when it comes to decisions between investing in new infrastructure or more retrofitting.”

 

Monica Frassoni, EU-ASE President

Regarding the Clean Energy Package for All Europeans, she stressed that some progress has been made with the adoption of the recast Energy Efficiency Directive, but underlined the need to increase the energy efficiency target by 2023, as a possibility given by the upwards revision clause.

Citizens need to be involved to ensure a transparent discussion on the choices that are being made when it comes to decisions between investing in new infrastructure or more retrofitting” she stressed, and pointed out the difference of these choices in terms of their financial impact but also in terms of their impact on citizens health and the quality of life. Ms Frassoni informed the audience about the European Commission’s Impact Assessment, which stated that every percentage point increase in the 2030 energy efficiency target would mean lifting millions of people out of energy poverty and called on the Commission to show more ambition in the future. In her intervention she also gave an example of very low interest for green mortgages and stressed the need to create the sense of urgency among consumers that more ambitious legislations is needed and that that it is good for the consumers, their quality of life and for the environment.

“Energy efficiency first is not a PR concept, but a principle that should guide the implementation and investment decisions.”

 

Monica Frassoni, EU-ASE President

EU-ASE President concluded by stressing that the European Alliance to Save Energy is calling for energy efficiency to be perceived as an integral part of the future energy system with an ultimate aim to benefit European citizens.

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Top climatologist and Members of the European Parliament at EU-ASE 6th Annual Dinner

“The sign of hope in the climate conversation is that we are all sitting here today to talk about climate.”

Kathleen van Brempt, MEP and Honorary Member of EU-ASE

On 18th September, the European Alliance to Save Energy held its 6th Annual Dinner debate. This year the event gathered EU-ASE business members and high-level guests including top climatologist Prof. Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, and MEPs Kathleen van Bremptand Bendt Bendtsen, both Honorary Members of EU-ASE.

The dinner focused on how to leverage the Multi Annual Financial Framework (MFF) post 2020 to fully implement the EU climate and energy legislation in view of achieving net zero emissions  by 2050.

“We can do it, we can change the point of view on climate and make EU countries have this in their minds.”

Bendt Bendsten, MEP and Honorary Member of EU-ASE

In his keynote speech, Professor van Ypersele confirmed that “limiting global temperature to 2ºC is outdated – we need more ambition” and underlined that a much more efficient use of energy and lifestyle changes towards energy consumption are key to tackle climate change. He also added that we are running short of time: “the more we wait, the more difficult it will be to reverse the problem.”

Following the keynote speech, the EU-ASE members welcomed Ms van Brempt, who underlined that “the sign of hope for the future is that we are all sitting here today to talk about climate“. Her speech was followed by Mr Bendtsen, who agreed with Prof. van Ypersele, stressing that the “ambition is still not high enough” and added that “it is still possible to change the view on climate issues of some EU countries”.

EU-ASE members took part to the debate to call for integration of the Energy Efficiency First principle into the EU Long-term Energy and Climate Strategy;  a climate proof budget post 2020 to leverage private investments;  and net zero emissions target by 2050 at the latest to pave the way towards a decarbonised economy.

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