Energy efficiency

In news, the European Union has already achieved a lower number of final energy consumption than the set goal for 2020, according to the European Commission’s second State of the Energy Union Report. The target for EU Member States is a 20% primary and final energy consumption reduction by 2020. While the Member States have met the final consumption goal, they have work to do in reducing primary energy consumption, as they have not yet met that objective for 2020.

The European Commission has launched a new database on the EU's building stock to monitor the energy performance of buildings across Europe. The database – called the EU Building Stock Observatory – provides information on buildings' characteristics including their construction period, energy use, onsite renewable energy and renovation rates.

A number of member states have not fully transposed EU rules on company energy efficiency audits into national law more than a year after the deadline.  In a study, conducted on behalf of the European Commission, Spain, Poland and other Eastern European member states had failed to complete the transposition.  Whilst many of the other EU countries had transposed the rules by summer 2015, a number of them are failing to check whether large companies are carrying out the required audits.

By 2030, more energy will be saved than the amount of energy consumed deriving from oil, according to a JRC analysis. Energy savings can thus be considered as "an energy source in its own right", in line with the European Commission strategy for a resilient energy union. As Europe is likely to miss the intermediary 2020 target of 20% of energy saved, the authors recommend scaling up private investments and introducing a guarantee fund to remove the perceived risk by investors.

Some 900 thousand people were employed in work relating to the supply of energy efficient goods and services in 2010, according to a new study  from Cambridge Econometrics that ‘assesses the employment and social impact of energy efficiency’. The report that was published in December 2015, underlines the increasing demand for high-skilled workers in jobs which involve auditing, consulting, organisation and consultation, such as managers of major building projects.

A new EU-funded project, Construct PV, is working on how to integrate photovoltaic (PV) systems into buildings from their very inception. Rather than panels being placed on roofs, this new technology is being used to replace parts of conventional building materials, such as roofs and facades. Construct PV develops customizable photovoltaic structures for opaque building surfaces for new buildings and buildings undergoing renovation.

Energy Efficiency and Renewables conference - South-East Europe plays an important role in the transition towards the low carbon economy.  This event brings business and experts together with stakeholders in Bulgaria, Romania and the neighbour regions who are engaged in energy efficiency and renewables from the public and private sectors. With the EU focus on heating and cooling in 2016 this event will provide an insight into emerging schemes for innovation in adapting the region’s building stock in the years to come.

The European Commission wishes to consult interested stakeholders as part of the Review of Directive 2012/27/EU on energy efficiency (EED), foreseen for the second half of 2016. The Review has a targeted approach and will focus on Articles 1, 3, 6, 7, 9-11, 20 and 24, to assess these Articles in view of the 2030 energy efficiency target. 

The consultation is open until 29th January 2016

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France has set ambitious energy saving targets in its new energy transition and green growth law (Loi n° 2015-992) passed by France’s lower chamber on 17 August. The law aims to cut the energy consumption of private homes in order to attain a 330-kilowatt hours per oil equivalent (by m2 per year) in 2030. The energy transition law sets targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 on 1990 levels and to increase the share of renewables in the energy mix to 32% by 2030. To achieve this, renewable energy will have to cover 40% of electricity production. 

ENEP is happy to announce their Associate Partnership in the EU HORIZON 2020 project STEAM UP that has started recently. STEAM UP aims to assess the substantial and easy to assess  energy-saving potential of steam systems in heavy industries, in support of the EU goal to achieve a 20%  increase in energy efficiency by 2020. To this end, STEAM-UP will perform the following activities:

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