Tackling energy poverty and the EU's resilience: challenges from an economic and social perspective

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EESK atzinums: Tackling energy poverty and the EU's resilience: challenges from an economic and social perspective

Key points

 

The EESC:

  • believes that ensuring equal access to energy and the security of energy supply at affordable cost must be an absolute priority for the European Union (EU) and its Member States. Urgent measures need to be adopted to prevent and tackle energy poverty faced by EU citizens and consumers;
  • acknowledges the importance given to energy poverty in EU initiatives, including legislation and policies. However, the EU's resilience will only be measured by the way the EU and the Member States address the critical social, environmental and economic challenges faced by its citizens and businesses;
  • calls for the establishment of a broad and ambitious political coalition to analyse and address energy poverty from a holistic approach with the objective of bringing it to a minimum level by 2030 and eliminating it altogether in the long term. The actions of the coalition should be further developed in an EU Strategy against energy poverty;
  • asks the Commission to encourage Members States to develop national plans or policies to eradicate energy poverty, integrating and giving coherence to all policy and funding instruments at EU and national levels;
  • urges the EU to promote a common approach to energy poverty that will allow for a tangible and shared understanding of energy poverty and the collection of statistical data, taking into account Member States' differences and particularities;
  • calls on the Commission and Member States to continue to focus on reducing poverty overall. This crisis is a reminder of the constant need to improve access to employment, social inclusion and decent standards of living, and to support the economic growth of Member States.