07 January 2011

Commission urges 'concrete progress' on energy efficiency

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The European Commission signalled yesterday (5 January) that it would press member states hard to deliver "concrete steps" towards the EU's goal of a 20% improvement in energy efficiency by 2020

José Manuel Barroso, the Commission president, said "the member states have agreed on the 20% target [for energy efficiency] but so far they're not delivering, and the way that the process is being pursued is far from perfect".

The EU's 2020 targets are for a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, a 20% increase in the proportion of renewables in the energy supply, a minimum use of 10% biofuels and a 20% improvement in energy efficiency, all compared with 1990 levels.

However, the energy efficiency target is the only one of these that is not binding. On 15 December 2010, the European Parliament passed a motion demanding that it be made so.

Barroso declined to say whether he supported such a move but conceded that, unlike the binding renewables and emission reduction targets, "there was no specification of the concrete steps so probably this is one of the reasons why we are not going so fast in energy efficiency".


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