Energy Policy Industry Critisises EU Energy and Climate Policy
Europe's chemical industry association Cefic calls for an “competitive energy and affordable climate policy” in Europe. Esepcially the availability of cheap shale gas in the US raises concerns about energy costs, speakers stated.
Brussels/Belgium – The EU Council on Competitiveness, meeting today, deals with the latest European Commission proposals on energy and climate policy.
“The Competitiveness Council is supposed to be the guardian of Europe’s competitiveness”, says Cefic Director General Hubert Mandery. “The Council has to set the course towards cost-competitive and secure energy. This is the number one priority for Europe’s energy-intensive industries”.
Europe Needs Competitive Energy and Affordable Climate Policy
Gas and electricity costs in the USA are respectively one third and half of those in the EU. If the EU wants to raise industry’s contribution to EU GDP to as much as 20% by 2020, industry should not be saddled with additional policy costs. The Commission’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction proposals would mean for the European chemical industry a 70% reduction from 1990 levels. This sector has already achieved a 50% reduction, and could do even more. But the Commission’s proposals, as they stand, are asking too much - and would imply exporting jobs and importing goods.
“Energy and climate policy must be affordable. Undermining Europe’s competitiveness leads straight to de-industrialisation!” warns Mandery. With a proper framework, the chemical industry can continue making a major contribution towards a more carbon-efficient EU economy. The EU should abandon costly unilateral measures, which have proven unsuccessful in the past, and instead work for a global climate deal.