Binding primary energy saving target: The engine of the energy transition
Saving energy is the cheapest, safest and cleanest way to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. Everyone can contribute to reducing energy consumption, from consumers to businesses and industries.
Energy efficiency measures could positively impact prices by directly reducing energy bills, making the EU economy more resilient and accelerating the EU’s clean energy transition. Ensuring commitment and accountability at the EU and Member State levels would be crucial, counting that energy efficiency is the only non-binding target in the 2030 energy and climate framework.
Trilogue negotiations on Energy Efficiency Directive (EED)
On the 1st of January, the Swedish presidency took over the trilogue negotiations on Energy Efficiency Directive (EED). According to the timetable, it is expected to be concluded on the 9th of March.
In the meantime, as part of its REPowerEU plan, the European Commission amended its EED proposal included in the Fit for 55 Package and suggested a 13% energy efficiency target for 2030 rather than the original 9% set in 2021.
In response, the EU Parliament supported with a cross-party majority an increase of the 2030 energy efficiency target to at least 14.5% for both primary and final energy. In addition, the text includes an upgrade to the national energy efficiency contributions from indicative to binding.
The European Council, however, took a different approach by limiting the energy efficiency target to the original Commission proposal of 9% (based on PRIMES 2020) before REPowerEU.
While Member States did not discuss whether to increase the ambition of the 2030 energy efficiency target in line with the amended proposal, they decided to address this directly in the trilogue with the European Parliament.
District heating and cooling sector prospectives
To ensure that sustainable DHC development has an impact towards the EU targets, it is pivotal for the DHC sector to set binding energy efficiency targets for both final and primary energy.
The heat or cold delivered by district heating and cooling systems is currently counted as energy in the primary energy consumption but as water products in the final energy consumption.
For the reasons mentioned above, we co-signed an open letter of the European Alliance to Save Energy (EUASE), in which 10 business organisations are joining forces to call for EU energy efficiency target fit for Europe’s climate goals while ensuring sustainable economic growth and local job creation during this decade.
EHP urges the EU co-legislators to substantially increase the ambition to set a 14.5% target for energy efficiency in 2030, with binding targets for both primary and final energy consumption and binding national contributions. Action is needed in these times of unprecedented energy prices and worldwide climate change.
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