To get rid of Russian fossil fuels, the EU needs to put energy savings first

The REPowerEU plan must come with credible, actionable measures that governments, citizens and industry can implement by following the Green Deal agenda and notably energy savings measures. To support this, the EU can count on clean, made-in-Europe technologies that are at the heart of the energy transition, write Monica Frassoni and Harry Verhaar in Euractiv.

The aggression against Ukraine by Putin is not only a tragic reminder that peace is never an evidence but also another powerful reminder of the urgency of getting rid of our dependence on fossil fuels and accelerating the full implementation of an ambitious Green Deal. Over the past decades, the EU hesitated to address its reliance on fossil fuels import, a well-known threat to the block’s energy security.

In 2021 the EU imported more than 40% of its fossil gas consumption from Russia, about 155 billion cubic meters. A considerable amount of this gas is needed to heat Europe’s old and inefficient buildings. Fossil gas accounts for more than 32% of the EU’s final energy consumption in households. If we also consider the indirect use of gas for electricity production, we have the extent of Europe’s gas reliance problem and the risks of its dependency on energy imports.

We welcomed the immediate reaction of the Commission in March with the REPowerEU communication, despite its excessive focus on diversification of gas supply. We are confident that the action plan published on 18 May will be much more coherent with the need to reduce our dependence on Russian gas and fossil fuels altogether through an acceleration of energy efficiency measures and renewables deployment.

The REPowerEU plan must come with credible, actionable measures that governments, citizens and industry can implement by following the Green Deal agenda and notably energy savings measures. To support this, the EU can count on clean, made-in-Europe technologies that are at the heart of the energy transition. A broad range of short and mid-term measures to address the energy and climate crisis is available. We believe that by deploying energy efficiency measures in buildings, industry, transport and the water sector, Europe can deliver massive energy savings and substantially reduce Europe’s fossil fuel imports.

Read the full article in Euractiv 

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EU-ASE at webinar on decarbonising heating in buildings (Italy)

On Tuesday 19 April, EU-ASE president Monica Frassoni spoke at the webinar Aspettative dalla legislazione italiana ed europea, the fifth of a series of webinars organised by Legambiente and Kyoto Club as part of the campaign Per la decarbonizzazione: efficienza energetica e riscaldamento negli edifici in Italia. The aim of the project is to raise awareness among public opinion, companies and public decision-makers, proposing amendments to current Italian and European legislation.

The event speakers were Eleonora Evi, Italian Member of the European Parliament, Monica Frassoni, President of EU-ASE and Giulia Lupo, Senator of the Italian Republic.

Watch the recording here

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Interview with Radio24 (Italy)

The European Parliament last week voted by a large majority for a resolution calling for further sanctions against Russia, as well as for an amendment for a complete and immediate EU embargo on imports of Russian oil, coal, nuclear fuel and gas.

EU-ASE president Monica Frassoni was interviewed on this topic on the morning programme of Radio24, Italy’s leading business radio station.

The podcast is available here (in Italian)

L'Europa vota per l'embargo alla Russia

by Radio24 with Monica Frassoni

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How to make the energy efficiency directive Water-Smart?

On 8 February, the president of the European Alliance to Save Energy, Monica Frassoni, spoke at the webinar “How to make the Energy Efficiency Directive water smart?” organised by the MEP Water Group.

In her intervention Monica Frassoni raised the importance of the water-energy nexus and the need to coordinate water and energy legislations. Speakers included MEP Pernille Weiss, Chair of the MEP Water Group; Claudia Canevari, Head of unit, Energy Efficiency; MEP Eleonora Evi, ENVI Committee; Durk Krol, Executive Director of Water Europe and Arnaud de Bermingham, President & Founder of Scaleway.

 

Watch the recording here

 

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Online workshop: Shaping the decade of building renovations

Speakers:

  • Prof. Dr. Diana Urge Vorsatz, Vice Chair of WG III of the IPCC, Central European University
  • Mechthild Wörsdörfer, Deputy Director-General, DG ENER, European Commission
  • Sean Kelly, Member of the European Parliament
  • Iskra Mihaylova, Member of the European Parliament
  • Antoine Caron, Deputy Head of Department, Department for quality and sustainable development in construction, Directorate for Housing, Urban Planning and Landscapes, French Ministry for Ecological Transition
  • Monica Frassoni, President, European Alliance to Save Energy (EU-ASE)

EU-ASE is hosting an online workshop on Friday 28 January to talk about the revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. Three objectives must take priority: increasing energy efficiency, reducing emissions and lowering energy prices.

The European Commission presented its much awaited proposal to revise of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) in December 2021, the last piece of the legislative package ‘Fit for 55’ to put the Union on track towards climate neutrality.

Buildings are a central aspect of our daily lives, as we spend most of our time indoors. But 75% of buildings in the European Union are not energy efficient, which poses problems to reduce emissions, and many of them will still be standing by 2050. Wasting energy not only has dire consequences for the environment, it also means higher energy bills for citizens and businesses.

The revision of the EPBD proposed by the European Commission acknowledges these challenges and offers a good direction, but more actions are needed to trigger a renovation wave for the EU building stock to be energy efficient.

The high-level event, organised by the European Alliance to Save Energy, is an exchange of views on how to increase energy efficiency and decarbonise buildings while boosting economic growth and create job opportunities.

Watch the recording here

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