Energy efficiency first: The Commission adopts three Recommendations to help Member States put the clean energy transition into practice

Putting energy efficiency first is a key objective of the Energy Union. Energy savings are an efficient way of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and thereby contribute to the EU’s action against climate change. They also help Europeans to save money on their energy bills. The European Commission today adopted three recommendations to help Member States to transpose and implement the amending Directive on Energy Efficiency. They are particularly relevant in the context of finalisation of the National Energy and Climate Plans. This Directive is one of the flagship pieces in the Clean Energy for All Europeans package in which the EU has set the ambitious targets to be at least 32.5% more energy efficient by 2030, relative to a ‘business as usual’ scenario. The recommendations provide detailed guidance on the practical implementation of the energy savings obligation for the period 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2030; the revised metering and billing provisions for thermal energy; and efficiency in heating and cooling. Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič said: “We need to make sure that altogether, national contributions on energy efficiency amount to the EU’s 2030 target of at least 32.5 percent. The gap could be as big as approximately six percentage points and therefore, we invite Member States to step up their game. The recommendations adopted today will help Member States better tap existing potential. It is not only about credibility. Let’s not miss the chance to modernise our economies.” Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete added: “Europe is the largest importer of fossil fuel in the world. With our increased ambition on energy efficiency we put an end to this. The revised energy efficiency rules are a major push for Europe’s energy independence. Much of what we spend on imported fossil fuels will now be invested at home in more efficient buildings, sustainable industries and transport. The new target of 32.5% will boost our industrial competitiveness, create jobs, reduce energy bills, help tackle energy poverty and improve air quality”.