Energy efficiency

Electricity 27-06-2017

Renewable energy gap in heating ‘unacceptable’, EU says

As renewable energies gradually take control of power generation, the heating and cooling sector remains far behind, with fossil fuels – heating oil, gas or even coal – still making up 84% of Europe’s heating consumption.

Energy 27-06-2017

Commission laments member states’ lack of ambition on energy saving laws

The EU's 28 energy ministers on Monday (26 June) agreed on a general approach to the revisions of two key energy efficiency directives. But the European Commission lamented a “significant reduction” in ambition compared with its original proposals.

Electricity 26-06-2017

New electrification alliance seeks top billing in EU’s decarbonisation efforts

Industry groups representing sectors as varied as wind and solar power, fuel cell batteries, copper and heat pumps, have clubbed together to launch the Electrification Alliance, with the hope that electricity will be recognised as the main energy carrier in Europe’s decarbonisation drive.

Energy 26-06-2017

Stockholm mayor: ‘Fuel poverty is non-existent in Nordic countries’

Nordic countries have relegated fuel poverty to the history books by setting legal minimum standards for heating and giving house-owners a strong incentive to invest in refurbishment, says the mayor of the Swedish capital.

Energy 26-06-2017

Five steps to unlock the EU’s cooling potential

In our modern society, cooling is a necessity that has a strong influence on health, productivity at work, cutting down food loss, industrial processes, and more. Keeping ourselves cool, sustainably, means we could keep the planet cool too, writes Jürgen Fischer.

Energy 23-06-2017

Long freeze on new labels for heaters may slow innovation, decarbonisation

In a possible nod to industry demands, the EU's new energy label regulations will allow a 10-year transition period for heaters until 2030, a move likely to confuse consumers, hinder innovation in clean technology and extend the market life of fossil-fuelled devices, critics said.

Energy 22-06-2017

Will EU ministers heed Macron’s call to #Makeourplanetgreatagain?

Europe’s proposed 30% energy savings objective means less savings in the period 2020-2030 than in 2010-2020 and are in direct contradiction with the spirit of the Paris Agreement, writes Yamina Saheb as EU energy ministers prepare to meet on Monday (26 June).

Energy 21-06-2017

Will EU Council block trillions of investment in energy efficiency?

Politicians have a tendency to play things safe, only committing to policy objectives that are well within reach, even when it goes against long-term EU goals or plain common sense. This seems to be the case for the draft Energy Efficiency Directive, warns Benedek Jávor.

Energy 21-06-2017

Heating and cooling

The heating and cooling of buildings and industry is responsible for half of the EU’s energy consumption, and “much of it is wasted” according to the European Commission.

Electricity 21-06-2017

Death of coal ‘might take longer than we think’, says EU’s new utility boss

The “denial phase” is over, the outgoing president of Eurelectric said as he opened the trade association’s annual convention in Estoril, Portugal on Monday (19 June).

Electricity 21-06-2017

IEA chief economist: ‘1970s’ power grids need urgent rethink

Electric vehicles could revolutionise Europe’s electricity system, but an outmoded network regulation could hamper progress, according to Laszlo Varro, chief economist at the International Energy Agency.

Energy 21-06-2017

EU will fail Paris climate challenge unless it tackles heating and cooling

The European Union’s fight against global warming is doomed to fail unless decisive action is taken to change the way we heat and cool our buildings.

Energy 20-06-2017

Paris Agreement under threat as member states water down building performance measures

While President Trump is grabbing world headlines by publicly trashing the Paris climate agreement, EU member states are also trying to sabotage this deal by watering down measures in the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) and Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), writes Adrian Joyce.

Economy & Jobs 20-06-2017

Why Europe needs an industrial strategy

Global investment in energy efficiency now outstrips investment in conventional power generation. Europe is at the forefront and recognises that energy efficiency represents a vast energy resource that is one of the most cost-effective ways of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, writes Heinz Haller.

Electricity 20-06-2017

Storage ‘not fundamentally needed’ for future power grid, scientists say

The emergence of household batteries, along with small-scale solar photovoltaic and plug-in electric cars, is slated to transform electricity storage, according to a new state-of-the-art report by European science academies. But experts claim storage is not actually fundamentally needed.

Energy 15-06-2017

Decoupling energy from GDP growth ‘might be impossible’, Statoil says

The Norwegian oil and gas giant presented its latest Energy Perspectives report in Brussels today (15 June), stressing the need to dramatically reduce global energy consumption as EU member states continued to squabble about the bloc’s energy savings objectives for 2030.

Climate change 13-06-2017

New energy labels for appliances seen as boon for consumers

The European Parliament approved on Tuesday (June 13) the introduction of new energy labels for household appliances, which MEPs and industry experts said should enable consumers to save money and cut energy consumption while helping the bloc reduce overall carbon emissions.

Energy 01-06-2017

Indoor air quality sneaks into EU buildings law review

A last-minute push by energy activists has convinced the European Commission to include indoor air quality considerations into the revised Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD). Making it happen on the ground could prove a bigger challenge, however.

Energy 31-05-2017

Brussels project shines light on muggy battle for healthy homes

A social housing project in one of Brussels' poorest neighbourhoods aimed to demonstrate that renovation doesn't have to be expensive and brings many other side benefits – a notion that resonates with what policymakers are trying to achieve on the other side of town, from the posher buildings of the EU district.

Energy 31-05-2017

Building renovation can provide new momentum to the European project

Politicians often ignore building renovation programmes as low-level politics reserved for energy experts. This is misguided, says Oliver Rapf – as renovation stands at the crux of economic, energy, social and even health policies.

Energy 30-05-2017

MEPs: Building renovation ‘isn’t sexy but it’s bloody important!’

Renovating Europe's building stock isn't just critical for meeting EU climate and energy savings targets – it will dramatically improve living conditions and health while boosting the overall economy, according to the three MEPs leading the European Parliament's work on the Energy performance of buildings directive.

Energy 29-05-2017

Poor housing linked to rising asthma cases in Europe

One in six Europeans – equivalent to the entire population of Germany – live in a damp or mouldy building, which increases their chances of getting illnesses such as asthma, according to a new study.

Energy 29-05-2017

Healthy buildings, healthy people

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The renovation of the EU’s building stock is seen as critical in achieving the bloc’s climate change targets, while reducing dependence on imported fuel. However, less is known about the positive impact renovation can have on people's health.

Energy 29-05-2017

Building efficiency: Waking up the sleeping giant

Cutting wasteful energy use in buildings is at the centre of EU efforts to decarbonise its economy and reduce dependence on fossil fuel imports. However, there is still vast untapped potential in modernising heating, cooling and ventilation equipment known as technical building systems, research has shown.

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