European climate and energy policy: The challenges ahead

2017-05-10, by JUAN ANTONIO PAVÓN LOSADA, from Fundación Alternativas

Executive Summary:

The lack of sensitivity of the United States towards environmental protection, coupled with  the failure of EU in solving their chronic financial, social and political instability crisis,have left global environmental protection strategy in the absence of leadership. In dealing with environmental issues, strategic project in the near future of the international community are essential.

Within the EU, proposed solutions to deal with energy and climate crisis include: (1) Changing current highly polluting high carbon-based energy, and to stop depending too much on foreign sources; (2)Improving infrastructure to help create an “Energy Union”; (3) Promoting a framework to support and encourage investment, and to create adequate jobs.

However, the EU energy policy still has a long way to go, as EU countries suffer from a severe lack of coordination. Although the solutions adopted by European authorities entail the reduction of energy consumption and the inclusion of renewable energy systems, measures of implementation differ at the national level. EU is also accused of having inadequate tools to implement its own policies, which caused the the significant decline of the production of renewable energy.

Another symptom of the inadequacy of the current European energy model is the existence of the “energy islands”.  The lack of access to central and northern Europe energy platforms, as well as the North African ones, not only increases energy prices, produces negative impact on consumption, but also hinder the overall economic situation. The proposed measure for this should include intra and extra EU interconnections to meet the structural requirements  for country, as well as alternating external energy suppliers.

Besides, the EU must seize opportunities that technology provides and leads the transformation of the electricity market in the way of decentralization, networking, control energy and sustainability.

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