On 25 February the European Commission published its proposals for an Energy Union for Europe. These include plans for an electricity market re-design and energy investments driven by the EU Emission Trading Scheme (ETS), not subsidies in future. The Commission will push back on the renationalisation of energy policy and foresees a greater role for EU institutions in both the gas and electricity markets. On gas, the Commission wants to be involved in Member States negotiations of intergovernmental energy agreements with third countries such as Russia, for example. It plans a substantial suite of initiatives on energy efficiency and decarbonising of transport.
But amongst all these plans, what is the Commission going to prioritise? What will Member States push forward? Heads of state and government in March did not embrace all of the Commission’s proposals and EU ETS reform is proving extremely contentious.
Will Energy Union deliver an energy transition for Europe? What’s the best way forward? Will it stimulate growth, jobs, investment and innovation? Is Brussels getting the balance right between the short- and long-term, electricity and gas, and renewables, efficiency and conventional fuels and infrastructure? How can the Juncker Plan best help implement the Energy Union? How does the Energy Union relate to the 2030 climate and energy goals and what kind of governance system could serve them best? Finally, can Brussels deliver?
- Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President of the European Commission in charge of Energy Union
Anders Marvik, Vice-President Statoil EU Affairs office