EU energy policy

Energy Union should shift focus from energy to climate

Maroš Šefčovič VP Energy Union visits Living Tomorrow innovation hub in Vilvoorde, Belgium (photo Europe by Satellite)

The EU is trying to improve its energy security by building more infrastructure to facilitate gas imports, but the concentration of its gas suppliers keeps increasing, write Stefan Bößner and Douglas Fraser of the Stockholm Environment Institute. According to Bößner and Fraser, it makes more sense to shift the focus of EU energy policy to creating a low-carbon energy system. That will not only help Europe meet its climate targets, but also … [Read more...]

Exclusive – Klaus Shäfer, CEO Uniper: “Security of supply is too important to leave to the market”

Klaus Schäfer-slider

The market on its own cannot be relied upon to deliver secure electricity and gas supplies, says Klaus Schäfer, CEO of Eon-spin-off Uniper, in an exclusive interview with Energy Post. According to Schäfer, it will become “dramatically more difficult” to balance the power market as the share of renewables increases. He also sees the gas market becoming “more and more complex” and argues policymakers should establish minimum requirements for gas … [Read more...]

Energy Union: Delivery pending

Maroš Šefčovič Vice-President of the EC in charge of Energy Union (photo Europe by Satellite)

Electricity market design, renewable energies, energy efficiency – the EU Commission’s recent “Winter Package” touches upon some of the core themes of the envisioned “Energy Union”. But finding  agreement on all these dossiers will be difficult in this politically turbulent year, writes Severin Fischer of the Center for Security Studies (CSS) at ETH Zurich. According to Fischer, five aspects deserve closer attention. Courtesy Policy Perspectives. … [Read more...]

Can UK power market reform replace the capacity market?

National Grid helicopter inspecting power lines

The UK has just completed another auction for a large amount of backup power capacity. The country’s capacity market scheme will cost ratepayers many billions of pounds. Independent consultant Gerard Wynn wonders if they are really necessary. … [Read more...]

MEPs will fight Brexit deal that lets the UK become an offshore pollution haven

photo London Green Party

The European Parliament has indicated it will not accept a Brexit deal that will let the UK have lower environmental standards than the EU, writes Charlotte Burns (@EUrefEnv), Senior Lecturer Environmental Policy at the University of York. If only because this would put EU manufacturers and farmers at a competitive disadvantage. Courtesy of The Conversation. … [Read more...]

Wake-up call: production of Dutch small gas fields headed for collapse

gas production in the Dutch part of the North Sea (photo Wintershall)

Partly as a result of policy neglect, production from small gas fields in the Netherlands has dramatically declined in recent years, a fact that so far seems to have escaped public notice, writes Jilles van den Beukel. Dutch gas is effectively being replaced by Russian gas, he notes. According to Van den Beukel, this is not in the best interest of the Netherlands or of the EU, neither from a financial nor from an environmental point of view. He … [Read more...]

What a CO2 price floor can (and cannot) do for German climate goals

photo Luc van Braekel-slider

Germany can meet its climate goals for the energy sector if it introduces a CO2-price floor of between €50 and €75 per ton, write Fabian Huneke, Carlos Perez Linkenheil and Simon Göß from the Berlin-based independent energy market specialist Energy Brainpool. However, if neighbouring countries don’t take similar measures, more than half of the reduced CO2- emissions will be shifted abroad, note the authors. As long as power markets are … [Read more...]