• Clean energy package : energy efficiency must be at the service of the climate objective

    If the European Commission intends to make the European Union a leader in fighting against climate change, its proposals on energy efficiency underline that the Commission did not choose the most efficient way to achieve this ambition. By considering energy efficiency as an objective per se, it introduces additional constraints in the energy system that will bring extra costs for our still-recovering economy.

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  • Brexit : what prospects for the future Europe (of energy)

    On March 29th, the United Kingdom triggered for the first time the article 50 of the Treaty on European Union thus leading to the end of the European Union as one knows it. Eight months after a historical referendum (52% of the Brits voted in favor of Brexit), and just a few days after the celebration the EU’s 60th anniversary, the triggering of article 50 brings at least two years of tough negotiations between the United Kingdom and the EU-27 so as to agree on terms of the exit. While uncertainties prevail regarding the magnitude of the challenges ahead, Brexit could have serious consequences on the energy and climate sectors.

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    Recent news has released information that could be considered as science fiction if only it was not published by very reliable sources. As examples, hacking actions have taken place during the last American election campaign and Wikileaks revealed the CIA’s technologies to spy the world environment and bypass encryption devices. Those examples underline, if need be, the the necessity to protect as much as possible what is essential to us, and in particular to ensure the proper functioning of the electric system…

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  • Clean Energy Package : the European Parliament in the spotlight !

    Following the release of the Clean Energy Package on Novembre 30th by the European Commission, it is now up to the European Parliament to take over several legislative proposals structurally important for the energy sector. Jerzy Buzek, chair of the ITRE Committee and major figure of the European Parliament on energy-related issues, expressed his ambition to achieve the Parliament’s legislative work as soon as possible, by the end of 2017. This seems to be an ambitious schedule, especially in the light of the density and complexity of the texts to be examined, and considering how far the Parliament is from having strong and stable political coalitions.

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  • How will brexit impact the energy sector ?

    Following last June 23rd, Europe does not have the same face anymore. Brexit has brought about significant uncertainties regarding the impact of a major European country leaving the European Union. Although it remains difficult to fully apprehend the consequences of the referendum, UFE has tentatively analyzed its possible repercussions on the energy sector…

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    Energy efficiency is a key component to achieve the European energy transition. Beyond the climate and economic benefits it engenders, energy efficiency fosters the emergence of the new industrial sectors of tomorrow, thereby consolidating a Europe severally impacted by the economic crisis. Whilst the European Commission is expected to propose a new energy efficiency framework in October 2016, stakeholders from the energy sector, with the support of UFE, from the building and financing sectors gathered in Brussels on June 21rd in order to identify a common strategy for a “successful energy efficiency approach in Europe”…

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    Renewable energies can be classified in at least two categories : on the one hand, the “dispatchable” means of generation (biomass, methanation, geothermal energy, and hydroelectricity to some extent), which should be understood as means whose generation can be adjusted depending on the grid’s needs, and on the other hand the energy inherently trapped in systems (wind, PV, maritime energy), whose generation can be adjusted (we then talk about capping). In order to maintain the necessary balance between demand and supply of the electricity system at all time, having the right share of dispatchable energy is obviously crucial. This has been, and remains, largely debated between experts of the electricity system’s functioning.

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  • Europe needs capacity mechanisms !

    At UFE’s initiative, 7 large associations of the German, Belgian, British, Irish, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish power sector published today a Joint Statement calling for an updated EU energy market design that includes both an Energy-only market and capacity mechanisms.

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  • Happy Europe Day !

    The Schuman Declaration, presented by then-French Foreign minister Robert Schuman on May 9th, 1950, is considered as a stepping-stone of the European construction. From the European Coal and Steel Community, a “de facto solidarity” unifying several European countries after World War II, to the European Union gathering 28 Member States, the scope of Energy cooperation in Europe has drastically expanded. Celebrating Europe Day on this May 9, 2016 is thus a great opportunity to take stock of progress made in the creation of a European energy Union and assess the remaining key challenges for the future …

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  • Setting a sufficient carbon price is the challenge of cop21 success

    With this sentence, President of France François Hollande opened the discussion on climate at the 4th Environment conference, held on April 25th in Paris. On this occasion, he noted that “the reform of [the emission trading] scheme is essential” because it “poorly functions” and, in particular, because “prices are too low and too volatile”. UFE strongly shares this perspective and has always called for progress to be achieved in this direction…

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