Accept Refuse

EUR-Lex Access to European Union law

This document is an excerpt from the EUR-Lex website

Document 52011DC0885

Moving toward competitive sustainable and secure energy for Europe

Go to the summaries’ table of contents

SURVEY: Tell us what you think about the summaries!

Moving toward competitive sustainable and secure energy for Europe

The European Union (EU) is committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by between 80-95 % below 1990 levels by 2050. It has a clear agenda up to 2020. Now it is setting a new direction for its decarbonisation ambitions for the following 3 decades in order to provide certainty for investors, governments and citizens.

ACT

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions - Energy roadmap 2050 (COM(2011) 885 final of 15.12.2011).

SUMMARY

WHAT DOES THE COMMUNICATION DO?

The energy roadmap examines various scenarios for achieving a competitive low carbon economy by 2050 while ensuring security of energy supply. It demonstrates that whichever scenario is chosen the decarbonisation aims are feasible.

KEY POINTS

To achieve the new energy system, the roadmap identifies the following factors:

  • the existing 2020 energy strategy, with its ability to help reduce emissions by 40 % by 2050, must be fully implemented;
  • the prime focus should be on energy efficiency, especially in new and old buildings, transport, products and appliances;
  • renewables have the potential to provide some 30 % of total EU energy consumption by 2030;
  • higher public and private investment is needed in R & D and technological innovation to make low-carbon energy commercially viable;
  • substituting gas for coal and oil can reduce emissions with existing technologies until at least 2030 or even 2035;
  • energy prices need to better reflect actual costs, especially when new investments are being made. The earlier this is done, the easier the change to a low-carbon system;
  • new energy infrastructure, for electric vehicles for example, and storage facilities are needed inside the EU and in neighbouring countries;
  • safety and security of traditional and new energy sources must remain paramount;
  • the EU should take a broader and more coordinated approach towards its international energy relations and moves to tackle climate change;
  • concrete milestones must be set for achievable goals and to give guidance to investors as the EU takes the next step by defining its 2030 policy framework.

BACKGROUND

Europe’s energy system needs to change for reasons of climate, security and the economy. Energy investment takes a long time to produce results. Decisions taken today are already shaping the energy system of 2050, as ageing infrastructure begins to be replaced and new forms of energy are developed. In this transformation, investors, both public and private, need a clear idea of the direction the EU is taking.

See also the European Commission’s energy strategy and roadmap 2050 webpages.

RELATED ACTS

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions - Energy 2020: a strategy for competitive, sustainable and secure energy (COM(2010) 639 final of 10.11.2010).

last update 30.07.2015

Top