EU Balks on Energy Efficiency Amid Trans-Atlantic Priority on Growth (3/01)     Print Email

The zeal for ever-tougher controls on carbon emissions seems to be seeping away in Europe, too – a trend measuring a dramatic U.S. shift away from cap-and-trade and carbon ceilings under the Obama administration.

In the EU, energy ministers resisted calls from the European Parliament on February 28 for tougher energy-efficiency measures – even though crude oil prices have risen close to the $100-a-barrel mark. Instead, the ministers seemed more intent on finding new sources for more energy security, notably shale gas. (Despite a new wave of environmental opposition, it has been a bonanza in the United States, but shale gas may not be a panacea in Europe.)

On energy efficiency, "the setting of any additional targets is not justified at present," was the conclusion published after the EU energy ministers' meeting. "The implementation of the EU energy efficiency target will be reviewed by 2013 and further measures considered if necessary,” it said.

For the moment, EU countries are lagging behind schedule in trying to meet their ambitious climate goal for 2050.  To get back on track, according to a leaked report by the European Commission, an extra five percent is needed in emissions savings over the next decade.

The energy ministers’ rejection of this more ambitious goal was attacked by Green party members at a meeting the same day of the European Parliament, but EU national governments have been reluctant to accept binding EU energy-efficiency targets until there is agreement on a common methodology to measure gains in efficiency.

 
  • 5G and the World Radio Conference 

    By Patricia Paoletta, Washington DC

    You may have heard that the United States is in “a Race to 5G.” 5G—or the Fifth Generation of wireless broadband—will be 100x faster than 4G, connect up to 100x more devices, and be 5x more responsive through lower latency. 5G is expected to connect people, things, transport systems, and cities in smart-networked, always-on environments. 5G will transport a huge amount of content much faster, reliably connect millions of devices, and process very high volumes of data with minimal delay.

    Read more ...

UMD Jean Monnet Research Project

The University of Maryland has received a Jean Monnet grant from the EU to conduct a series of policy exchanges between Europe and the US on filling infrastructure needs and the utility of public/private partnerships as the financing mechanism. If interested in participating in or receiving more information about these exchanges, please contact Rye McKenzie (rmckenzi@umd.edu).

New from the Bertelsmann Foundation

The Bertelsmann Foundation is an independent, nonpartisan and nonprofit think tank in Washington, DC with a transatlantic perspective on global challenges.

"The Troubles with Brexit", by Anthony T. Silberfeld

"Shared Values No More?", by Emily Hruban

"Trick or Treat", by Anthony T. Silberfeld

 

 

Summer Course

Get updates from EI@UMD