Energy & Environment

12-12-2017

UN Environment chief: We shouldn’t wait for the oceans to turn into a plastic swamp

At the latest United Nations environment summit, pollution topped the agenda. The man leading the UN’s quest to clean up the planet hopes this meeting will act as the wake-up call countries need and that the fight will include the world of business.

Energy 11-12-2017

Grid operators boss: ‘Time for energy utilities to re-invent their model’

Digital technologies like blockchain and artificial intelligence bring “total revolution” in the electricity industry, allowing energy communities to proliferate, says Laurent Schmitt. Utilities should not resist the change but embrace it to become “community enablers”, he told EURACTIV in an interview.

Energy 06-12-2017

Ristori: ‘With Poland, we have an extremely positive energy dialogue’

While EU countries step up efforts to phase out coal, the European Commission is preparing a new initiative to support regions in transition, says Dominique Ristori.

04-12-2017

Great Greenland CEO: seal hunting ban ‘devastating’ for Inuit communities

It is not profitable and may never be. And the EU has banned it. So why should seal hunting be supported? Because it is a sustainable way of life for Inuit people - and sometimes their only one. And the way forward for Greenland's independence, says Ditte Sorknæs.

Energy 04-12-2017

Lifetime extension of nuclear plants is big problem for EU power sector

More and more nuclear power plants run for a longer period than originally planned. It is therefore high time that those term extensions become a European issue, Claus Mayr of the German Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union told EURACTIV Germany in an interview.

Electricity 04-12-2017

ENTSO-E chief: Power grids have to remain ‘neutral’ from commercial activity

As private energy companies increasingly get involved in local electricity distribution networks, European regulators will have to do their job and ensure that grid operators are properly isolated from commercial activity, argues Laurent Schmitt.

Energy 30-11-2017

Think tanker: E-mobility push won’t affect EU oil demand significantly until 2040s

The IEA’s latest World Energy Outlook suggests the EU is set to wean itself off oil even as global consumption continues to rise. EURACTIV.com asked Georg Zachmann, a senior fellow at the Brussels-based think tank Bruegel, how he sees oil demand in the EU changing in the coming years.

Energy 30-11-2017

Finance expert: Small-scale energy efficiency loans deserve more EU attention

There are many creative ways to finance small-scale energy efficiency projects such as building renovations, but they need to be discussed more at the European Commission level, and defined more precisely, Jessica Stromback told EURACTIV Czech Republic.

Energy 16-11-2017

WindEurope: ‘Consumers are still paying for yesterday’s renewables’

Wind turbines installed up to fifteen years ago required heavy state subsidies, usually in the form of feed-in tariffs, remarks Giles Dickson. But this is no longer the case, he says, urging governments to use market-based systems like auctions, which guarantee stable revenues.

Climate change 16-11-2017

UN chief: Migration ‘highly desirable’ if managed humanely and responsibly

For the first time, the Paris Agreement acknowledged climate change causes migration. At COP23 in Bonn, the big question is how to address it, William Lacy Swing said in an interview with EURACTIV.com.

Electricity 15-11-2017

Think tank: Coal crisis, not climate policy, is forcing Polish energy overhaul

The unfolding crisis in the coal sector is leaving Poland with a looming power generation gap which is forcing decision-makers to reconsider the country’s energy mix. But politicians have until now delayed hard decisions and a transparent debate about it, says Joanna Maćkowiak Pandera.

Europe's East 02-11-2017

Miklos: Ukraine moves on with reforms towards functioning economy

Ukraine is moving towards a functioning market economy and liberal democracy, after stabilising its economy, cleaning up the banking sector and putting inflation under control, the chief economic adviser to the Ukrainian prime minister told EURACTIV Slovakia.

 

Electricity 26-10-2017

Nuclear agency chief: Small reactors ‘might be a game-changer’ for Europe

The political climate for nuclear energy is "not very positive" in Europe, admits William D. Magwood, and the industry is currently shifting towards Russia and Asia as a result. But the emergence of small modular reactors (SMR) built in factories might slow down the process, he argues.

Electricity 17-10-2017

Estonian minister: ‘Nobody is objecting’ to CO2 limit on power plant subsidies

The European Commission’s proposal for a CO2 limit on power plant subsidies is supported by the Council of Ministers, insists Ando Leppiman. But now the issue is more how it can be managed, he told EURACTIV.sk.

Aviation 16-10-2017

Airbus exec.: EU ‘bonus’ for aviation biofuels may be too little

The European Commission’s proposal to incentivise the production of biofuels for aircraft with a 20% “multiplier” goes in the right direction, says Thierry Nowaczyk from Airbus. The question is whether this is enough to fill the price gap with fossil-based kerosene, he told EURACTIV.com in an interview.

Energy 13-10-2017

Analyst: ‘Energy efficiency targets help, but they don’t go all the way’

When EU ministers discuss new energy savings objectives for 2030, they should also consider the actual policies needed to achieve them, because targets alone won’t deliver, says Phil Summerton.

Economy & Jobs 13-10-2017

City leader: Europe must simplify rules to help cities become more resilient

Europe is moving in the right direction in helping its cities become more resilient and sustainable, but the EU must streamline its myriad regulations and requirements to move the process along, the leader of an international NGO pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation told EURACTIV.com. Michael Berkowitz, the president of 100 Resilient Cities, also said …

Energy 11-10-2017

Peter Liese MEP: ‘Intelligent lighting has biggest saving potential’

The EU's ban on incandescent light bulbs was the low-hanging fruit for energy savings in lighting, believes German MEP Peter Liese. Much more can be achieved now with modern lighting technology, he told EURACTIV in an interview.

11-10-2017

Departing ECHA boss: ‘I don’t see myself joining a big lobby group’

Geert Dancet, the executive director of the Helsinki-based European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), will retire at the end of the year. In a wide-ranging interview with EURACTIV, he comes back over the EU’s sometimes excruciating efforts to bring the powerful European chemical industry into line.

Electricity 04-10-2017

EU power utility boss: ‘Coal is finished, the hard question now is gas’

Apart from Poland, there are no plans to build new coal-fired power plants in Europe, says Francesco Starace. The hard question today is instead who will build a new gas power plant. “And many companies are not doing that either,” he told EURACTIV in an interview.

Agrifood 03-10-2017

Green MEP: Sustainability criteria will distinguish ‘good’ and ‘bad’ biofuels

Sustainability criteria are needed to make a clear distinction between “bad” biofuels like palm oil and “good” ones like some ethanol, MEP Bas Eickhout told EURACTIV in an interview.

Economy & Jobs 02-10-2017

Corazza: Society can benefit from ‘gendered’ responses to disruption

In this new disrupted world, conventional thinking will not be enough to address the challenges posed by rapid changes, meaning a gendered perspective is needed to reveal fresh points of view, said Chiara Corazza in an interview with EURACTIV.

Energy 29-09-2017

Energy analyst: Russian proposals to use Ukrainian pipelines a ‘joke’

If Russia’s gas supply to Europe is to remain reliable, the Ukrainian system must run parallel to Nord Stream 2, Oleksandr Sukhodolia told EURACTIV Slovakia.

EU Internal Market Commissioner Elzbieta Bienkowska
Electric cars 27-09-2017

Bieńkowska: ‘What we want from Volkswagen is a different approach’

The car sector is keeping EU Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska busy. In an exclusive interview with EURACTIV, the Polish official spoke frankly about carmaker responsibility following the Dieselgate scandal, how to deal with Uber and how Brussels-Warsaw relations might not improve.