We urge the European Council in March to agree on the core elements of a climate and energy framework for 2030.
The European Council should urgently agree an ambitious and cost-effective 2030 climate and energy framework, including a binding domestic greenhouse gas target of at least 40%. A delay risks undermining commercial sector confidence, deferring critical energy investments, increasing the cost of capital for these investments, and undermining momentum towards a global climate deal. Decisions will equip the EU with clear objectives prior to the climate summit in September.
Renewables and energy efficiency will have to play a significant role in Member States’ decarbonised energy mixes and energy policies as they constitute no-regret options. The Council should agree on a binding EU renewables energy target which should not be translated into binding national targets by the EU, leaving greater flexibility for Member States to develop their own renewable energy strategies. The EU target should be at least 27 %.
Improved energy efficiency makes an essential contribution to all of the major objectives of EU climate and energy policies. We urge the Council to address energy efficiency as part of the 2030 framework after the mid-2014 review of the Energy Efficiency Directive.
We welcome the frank and open discussion in the Council and urge that discussions intensify over the coming weeks to develop broad agreement on a package that meets the needs of all addressing concerns including cost-effectiveness, fairness and solidarity.
Limiting global temperature rise to below 2 degrees is an absolute necessity; the conse¬quences for the world of failing to do so are too large. The Council should consider inter¬national cooperation and the use of high quality carbon market mechanisms in the context of raising ambition.
A well-functioning EU Emissions Trading Scheme is the cornerstone of a cost-efficient decarbonisation strategy and for unlocking low carbon investment. The EU ETS continues to require urgent and significant strengthening.
Certain energy intensive industries face a sustained competitiveness challenge due in part to the diverging EU-US energy prices. We note analysis from the IEA, Commission and other experts which confirm that the key drivers of this price gap are not costs related to the EU‘s energy and climate policies. In response, the Union and industry must work together to ensure strategic solutions are in place that maintain the competitiveness of European industry while delivering cost-effective low carbon transitions.
Finally, the European Council should ensure the 2030 policy framework re-energises the drive to complete the internal energy market in order to maximise the cost-efficiencies resulting from increasing market integration and inter¬connection, facilitate the increase of low carbon generation and increase Europe’s energy security.