We Don’t Need New Regulation, Make The Existing One Work!

energy roadmap 2050
15 febbraio 2012

Segnaliamo, all’interno del dibattito sulla Strategia Energetica Nazionale, il seguente intervento di Euroelectric sulla Eu Energy Roadmap 2050.

In a joint conference organised in Brussels on 7 February, the European Commission and the Danish EU Presidency gathered various stakeholders to discuss the aim and implications of DG Energy’s Roadmap 2050, published in December.

EURELECTRIC’s presidency and members used the opportunity to highlight both the association’s and their respective companies’ views on the document. EURELECTRIC is developing a response to the proposal, to be presented on 27 February at its Roadmap 2050 conference.

Johannes Teyssen, EURELECTRIC’s Vice President and CEO of E.ON, summarised the situation as follows: we don’t need new regulation – instead, the existing regulation needs to be fixed. The ETS as it now stood was ‘dead’, he said, pointing to a huge discrepancy between the explicit and the implicit carbon price. The ETS had to be strengthened. Commenting on the internal energy market, he stated that we had never been as far away from it as today, and that decisive measures had to be taken, including in the national capitals. Renewables, a key part of the electricity mix and the low carbon future, needed to be developed but ‘we are not doing it in the right way.’ Instead he called for more Europe, more cost efficiency, less wasted money, and less risk of retroactive changes which were a logical consequence of poorly designed and national support schemes. The time for Sunday speeches was over, and politicians had to hold the same speeches in Brussels and at home. Fulvio Conti, President of EURELECTRIC, reiterated these sentiments later in the conference and elaborated in greater detail on the needed investment climate and priority for RD&D and innovation.

Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard stressed the ne to engage into a much broader climate debate about the price of continuing with business as usual. People were victims of the fiction that this was the cheapest option, while the roadmap clearly showed that this was not the case, she said. Parallel breakout groups focused on energy efficiency, infrastructure, and market design and investments. Moderating the third group, Felix Matthes, member of the advisory group to the 2050 Energy Roadmap, identified ‘five elephants’: capacity mechanisms, fixes in the EU ETS, technology-specific targets, policy based on markets, and a European trajectory towards competitiveness. Speakers from EURELECTRIC, WWF, and EREC found it difficult to reconcile their views on these ‘elephants’: although all agreed on the need for a reinforced ETS and for stronger RD&D support, there was divergence on the perceived need for technology-specific targets. While EURELECTRIC members believe that the approach has to be technology-neutral and market-based, Arthouros Zervos (EREC) and Jason Anderson (WWF) chose not to elaborate on the depressing effect of RES support on the carbon price. Instead, Zervos accused subsidies for conventional technologies as being responsible for lacking RES competitiveness. They needed to be phased out to grant RES immediate competitiveness. EURELECTRIC Secretary General Hans ten Berge strongly contested this statement, citing the very low figures for coal subsidies from the IEA’s World Energy Report 2011.

EURELECTRIC will closely follow the Roadmap 2050 discussion, both by communicating its position on 27 February and beyond, but also in dialogue with the Commission. In its position EURELECTRIC strongly agrees with the advisory group to the roadmap, which has stressed the need for cost-effectiveness and a coherent policy framework instead of multiple conflicting targets.