Energy Efficiency Directive
Council’s proposal falls short of 20% target, NGO coalition says
By Tamás Kugyela | Tuesday 03 April 2012
The Danish EU Presidency’s proposal for the text of the Energy Efficiency Directive, compiled on 29 March, dilutes the binding measures and does not approve of the obligatory national targets requested by the European Parliament. These are the complaints of the Coalition for Energy Savings, the grouping of NGOs, energy companies and local authorities united to promote strong EU involvement in the matter.
The proposal, designed to serve as a basis for negotiations with the European Parliament, eases the energy saving obligations of distributors and narrows the scope of buildings that fall under a mandatory renovation regime. In the first topic (Article 6), the preliminary Council position would introduce an incremental pace for member states to achieve the 1.5% savings target. This would mean 1% savings up to 2015, 1.25% until the end of 2017 and 1.5% in 2020, effectively decreasing the overall savings rate to approximately 1.3%.
The obligation to renovate the floor area of central government buildings (Article 4) should only apply to the administrative departments “whose competence extends over the whole territory” of the country, the text reads.
These and several other proposed changes to the original text would leave a gap of 122 million tonnes of oil equivalent (Mtoe) to the final target, argues the Coalition of Energy Savings. The EU’s aim to reduce its energy use by 2020 requires the member states to save 368 Mtoe per year by 2020 compared to projections, staying below a total consumption of 1,474 Mtoe.
Talks with the European Parliament are scheduled to begin on 11 April.
The draft proposal is available at
www.europolitics.info > Search = 312209
Commission and Parliament
The draft directive on energy efficiency – COM(2011)0370 – was published by the Commission on 22 June 2011. It aims to bring the European Union back on track to reduce its estimated energy consumption for 2020 by 20%. Member states are expected to double the efforts they have made so far in the field.
Public bodies (Article 4): The Commission suggested a 3% obligatory annual renovation rate of public buildings in energy-efficient manner. The Parliament’s Committee on Industry (ITRE) opted for a lower figure of 2.5% of the total floor area, and would allow for methods other than renovation in attaining the target.
Energy savings obligation (Article 6):Annual efficiency commitments applying to energy distributors and retail companies equalling 1.5% of their energy sales are backed by a majority in Parliament.