The European Commission is preparing to publish, on 10 January, an unprecedented energy package', made up of around a dozen strategic documents that cover a series of themes linked to the Community's energy policy. The package' is due to contain: a global strategy, a report on the internal energy market, the final report from DG Competition on its sectoral inquiries (electricity and gas), a priority interconnections plan, a roadmap for renewable sources of energy, a report on the implementation of the green electricity' Directive, an overview of the EU's nuclear industry (PINC), a report on the implementation of the biofuels' Directive, a communication on clean' fossil fuels and a strategic plan for the technology (see Europolitics 3220). The Commission will present its strategy for the approval of the European Council and the Parliament before proposing any kind of legislation.


The strategy that the Commission will propose works on the principle that energy consumption will increase drastically and that it will be necessary to set up the means to meet this expected rise in demand. All this must be done while limiting as far as possible the Community's CO2 emissions, in view of the fact that the "EU's current energy policy is not sustainable". So the European Commission is proposing nothing short of a new industrial revolution' to move to a low carbon economy. The aim here is not to fundamentally revise the manner in which energy is used but rather to invest massively in new energy technologies (biofuels, especially second-generation ones, renewable sources for electricity and heating/air conditioning, hydrogen, fourth-generation nuclear fission, thermonuclear fusion, carbon capture and storage) and infrastructure (interconnections, external supply routes).

Two figures have not yet been revealed: the objective for the share of renewables in the European energy mix by the year 2020, and the objective for the reduction of CO2 emissions, by the same date. One could also add the objective for the share of biofuels, which could reach 14% by 2020. These highly political objectives have been the subject of lively debate within the Commission, which has been under great pressure from industry and environmental NGOs.

The external energy policy is of course part of the equation. And in this case, the Commission's proposed strategy goes further than that of the Council, since it proposes a list ofaactions to be started immediately with...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT