8 March 2022
Responding to the European Commission’s latest announcements on energy policy, including today’s Communication 'REPowerEU: Joint European Action for more affordable, secure and sustainable energy', COGEN Europe is calling on the EU and its member states to focus on improving energy efficiency and supporting system integration. In this context, the association insists that high efficiency cogeneration must be prioritised for all thermal energy generation.
"COGEN Europe welcomes the Commission’s Communication on affordable, secure and sustainable energy - REPowerEU - and we also support the Commission’s efforts to ensure a coordinated European response to the worrying developments in Ukraine and the ongoing energy price crisis," said Hans Korteweg, Managing Director of COGEN Europe, speaking in Brussels today.
"Now, more than ever, we have to realize that Europe cannot afford to waste energy! The EU and its member states must therefore give priority to improving energy efficiency and fostering system integration, in order to ensure that Europe’s energy system will be resilient and robust enough to weather market and geopolitical shocks, and also to mitigate impacts on consumers."
"The new Energy Efficiency Directive has to ensure the implementation of the 'energy efficiency first' principle across the entire energy value chain and in all sectors of the economy. There should be a stronger focus on preventing energy waste during the generation, transmission and distribution of heat and electricity, as the energy mix becomes more diversified and less emitting."
"High efficiency cogeneration must be prioritised for all thermal energy generation - from bioenergy to geothermal, solar thermal, waste heat and gaseous fuels. This will enable us to reduce our consumption of fossil fuels and support the integration of more renewables, providing European consumers with affordable energy whilst also helping to lower our CO2 emissions."
COGEN Europe stresses the importance of fostering an efficient and increasingly integrated energy system that is both resilient and robust enough to prevent or mitigate market and geopolitical shocks and their impacts on consumers. To achieve this, the following aspects must be considered:
- Effective integration of energy markets, systems, and sectors.
- Optimising energy efficiency and flexibility with a view to delivering useful energy to consumers in a cost-effective and reliable way.
- Full implementation of the 'energy efficiency first' principle in electricity and gas market design, as well as the broader Fit for 55 framework.
- Promotion of a diversified energy mix, fostering the availability and affordability of renewable energy sources and their efficient use for all consumers.
- Removal of barriers to the uptake of high efficiency cogeneration - which helps to optimise the use of valuable resources including gaseous fuels, reduce energy costs for consumers and maintain energy system resiliency.
COGEN Europe is also supportive of considering and addressing the immediate concerns of domestic and industrial energy consumers, without undermining the key function of price signals to trigger the uptake of energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions. The association asks the EU and its member states to bring forward measures and policies that will provide stable regimes and allow consumers and businesses to invest in confidence.