While the environmental benefits of the transition to low-carbon energy supply systems have been widely discussed, economic effects have only been touched upon in a piecemeal fashion, e.g. through employment in the renewable energy sector, the increasing cost competitiveness of energy from renewable sources, or the rise of energy poverty. In particular, it remains unclear how the economies of Europe's diverse regions are affected by the shift to decentralised, low-carbon energy supply. As recent political initiatives in relation to coal regions and islands however show, Europe's energy transition has a distinctively regional dimension. The EESC is currently working on an own-initiative opinion on "The effects of a new carbon-free, decentralised and digitalized energy supply structure on jobs and regional economies". In this opinion, it seeks to take stock of existing economic analyses on the regional effects and develop an assessment framework.
You are here
Energy - Related Events
In November 2017, the European Commission proposed an amendment to the Gas Directive (2009/73/EC) to ensure that gas pipelines from and to third countries are subject to the common rules of the internal gas market. The aim of this extension of the Gas Directive is to increase competition between gas suppliers and to boost energy security in the Energy Union.
Given the increasing dependency on gas imports, this amendment raises a number of political and economic questions in particular concerning its implications for current and future investments, regulatory burden for national authorities, and the autonomy of Member States in conducting external energy policy.
The objective of the hearing is to gather relevant views of experts and stakeholders that will help the EESC shape a comprehensive view of civil society on the Commission's proposal.
The event seeks to foster the debate of cross-cutting topics that have emerged from the EESC's recent work on the "Clean Energy for All Europeans" package, namely governance, empowering consumers, financing the energy transition, greening the economy, and the future (progress) of the Energy Union
The EESC is drawing up an opinion on the Commission's recent communication dedicated to waste to energy. This public hearing aims at gathering stakeholders' views on this critical aspect of the waste management and the transition towards a circular economy.
The aim of the conference was to obtain a better grasp of the role civil society has to play in energy security and the transition to renewable energy at both national and regional levels. The challenge is to channel civil society involvement and expertise towards creating more links, partnerships and dialogue between local, national and regional players.
Energy is a key priority of the current European Commission with its flagship policy initiative of the European Energy Union (EUEU). One key element of the flagship initiative concerns the expansion of renewables and a fundamental redesign of the energy markets in order to promote renewables, decentralized production and an active role for consumers. In its vision for the Energy Union, the Commission aims at putting "citizens at [the EUEU's] core". Changes in energy consumption and production patterns are in fact already occurring on the ground. New players are entering markets hitherto dominated by large manufacturers and distributors of energy. With the arrival of small-scale decentralized energy installations located in domestic backyards, the term "prosumers" emerged, i.e. entities/households that are producers and consumers of energy in one.
In view of the ongoing TTIP negotiations, the EESC is organising a seminar, whose main purpose will be to be to assess the need for an energy chapter in the TTIP, in particular after the lifting of the US restrictions on crude oil exports and the impact that such a chapter might have on trade of energy goods and services, and on environmental and energy policies both in the EU and the US. Main topics: a) the impact of TTIP on the EU energy market and security of energy supplies; b) the possibility to foster a more transparent, predictable, open and non-discriminatory framework for traders and investors in energy and raw materials, by improving transparency and competition in the energy sector; c) an energy chapter in TTIP as a model to shape energy relations with other countries; d) the impact on trade in environmental goods, renewable energy and energy efficiency, aiming at contributing to the achievement of SDGs and climate change targets.
On 30th March, the EESC's External Relations Section (REX) will hold a public hearing on the external dimension of EU's energy policy at its headquarters (Jacques Delors building) in Brussels.
The experts and representatives of civil society and EU institutions will discuss the key topics concerning the EU energy policy, including the diversification of energy sources and the completion of the single energy market.
The Energy Union has been identified as one of the ten key priorities of the current European Commission. This ambitious policy programme – with the aim of creating a European energy system that delivers secure, sustainable, competitive and affordable energy to Europe's citizens – has been launched in February 2015 and has already resulted in various policy initiatives.
The European Energy Union (EEU) is one of the key priorities of the European Commission. Launched in early 2015, the EEU programme has already resulted in various initiatives. Specifically, the public hearing will – from a stakeholder and expert perspective – be examining whether the governance process underlying the Energy Union programme is inclusive enough and how a wider set of participants may improve governance quality.