In line with this strategy, we have four areas of focus:
Ensuring that energy efficiency is a political priority
In 2007, EU Member States set an objective to reduce Europe’s energy consumption by 20% in 2020, and the EU is now discussing 2030 targets for GHG reductions and for the share of renewable energy. We are working to support adoption of a specific 2030 target for energy savings so that efficiency is valued as a prerequisite to building an affordable renewable energy system, as a key to maintaining European competitiveness and reducing energy import dependency, and as the main contributor to GHG reduction. The Coalition for Energy Savings, which we co-founded, has helped to build awareness of the societal benefits of energy efficiency and advocate for greater political ambition.
Designing and implementing national energy efficiency policies and support schemes
Once an energy savings target is set, capturing the actual energy savings potential requires a complex package of sector-specific policies and support schemes. Starting in 2014, the EU’s Energy Efficiency Directive requires Member States to reduce energy use by an additional 1.5 percent every year by obliging energy suppliers to deliver the savings or by establishing alternative programmes. Our partners track Member State progress and provide best-practice guidance on developing national legislation and programmes that comply with this directive; support coalitions advocating for robust implementation; and provide expert input into the design of effective regulations and support schemes. Our work in the UK on the Energy Bill Revolution campaign is a good example.
Developing roadmaps to improve the energy efficiency of buildings
All new buildings or buildings undergoing major renovation from 2021 onwards in Europe must consume very little energy or rely on renewable energy under the EU’s Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) – the most ambitious target for new buildings worldwide. The challenge will be to ensure that EU countries meet the mandate and prepare the buildings supply chain to step up to the challenge.
Adopting stricter standards and effective labels for appliances and equipment
All energy-using products made in or imported into the EU must meet minimum energy performance standards and product labels that encourage the production and purchase of more efficient models. The Ecodesign and Energy Labelling directives both established complex processes for designing and adopting new standards and labels. To counter industry efforts to weaken requirements and delay implementation, we support a network of technical experts and NGOs that monitor and participate in the regulatory process and arm policymakers with data and analyses to ensure adoption of the most ambitious, technically and economically feasible requirements. Our work in this arena has already led to notable successes, most recently on boilers and vacuum cleaners.
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