Transition to new sources of energy: technologies, costs and geopolitics

Europe has the leadership in trying to solve what is believed to be the main […]

16/07/2018

Europe has the leadership in trying to solve what is believed to be the main global problem of our times; climate change caused by increasing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel combustion. A commitment it took seriously when the scientific discussion emerged on this field at the beginning of the ‘70s, strengthened over the following decades until the Paris agreement of December 20151. The opportunity for jobs and increased GDP is immense. Many European Union policies are defined to combat climate change and it is one of the priorities, along with Energy Union, defined by the Commission in 2014 for 2020. Moreover, the Commission in 2011 approved the Road Map to 2050 that aims at reducing CO2 emissions between 80% and 95% compared to 1990 level by 2050.


 

Europe can boast important achievements since its emissions in 2016 were already 22% lower than in 1990, however the reduction trend stopped recently and inverted in 2017 with a sudden increase of 1.8%2, according to the preliminary estimates of Eurostat, driven mostly by a robust recovery of energy consumption. The target of 20% reduction by 2020 has already been reached, while that of 40%3 seems now more distant. The present paper after a brief analysis of the present energy market  conditions, emphasises that the process of transitioning to a lower carbon society at its most challenging phase. Initial decarbonisation was easier in the first phase from 1990 onward until few years ago, as there were large opportunities to improve energy efficiency and to close some of the most polluting plants. For instance several out-dated coal power stations in central and eastern Europe were replaced by modern plants using gas. In the countries with the biggest GDP in Europe, a huge jump of renewable energy sources (RES) took place due to generous subsidy schemes. Nevertheless renewables are becoming more and more competitive compared to conventional fuels. The latest roadmap from IRENA, prepared with the European Commission shows that the EU could cost effectively double its RES share.

Read the study

 

 

 

 

Find all related publications
Publications
07/12/2022

The Russia-Ukraine war: An inflection point for sustainable energy transitions

Russia’s war on Ukraine has led to a reorientation of EU energy policy towards phasing […]
05/12/2022

Policy challenges and actions for a just climate transition

Recovery Watch Series
21/11/2022

The EU and North Africa: Towards a just Twin Transition?

In an era marked by a deficiency in sustainable growth and a profusion of novel […]
13/07/2022

The EU’s transition to climate justice and gender equality

How just and how equal?
Find all related events
Events
Upcoming
12/12/2022
Online

The Russia-Ukraine war: An inflection point for sustainable energy transitions

Geopolitics of energy and the green transition
Past
30/11/2022
FEPS HQ, Brussels (Closed-door)

Territorial Just Transition Plans

Stakeholder meeting
28/11/2022
FEPS HQ, Brussels (Closed-door)

Breaking down the silos

Climate mainstreaming and holistic policy design in the face of multiple transitions
Find all related news
News
15/11/2022

FEPS delegation at COP27

FEPS delegation was present at COP27, with the strategic objectives of mobilizing climate finance for […]
28/09/2021

FEPS joins the European Alliance for a Just Transition

We are delighted to announce that FEPS joins the European Alliance for a Just Transition […]
28/04/2020

FEPS article series on intergenerational solidarity and the need for climate justice

This article series aims to inform on the ways in which intergenerational solidarity can be […]
27/04/2020

New Policy Report on the Green Deal: achieving sustainability and equity in a post-COVID-19 era

The Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS), together with the Institute for European Environmental Policy […]
Find all related in the media
In the media

La doble transición verde y digital como arma contra los depredadores de la energía

by Crónica Global 18/11/2022
Article by Pau Solanilla, Director of Fundació Rafael Campalans, ahead of the FEPS-Campalans event 'Figuring out the Twin Transition'

El reto de las Smart Cities, combinar digitalización y sostenibilidad

by ABC 18/11/2022
Article by Pau Solanilla, Director of Fundació Rafael Campalans, ahead of the FEPS-Campalans event 'Figuring out the Twin Transition'

Los retos de la doble transición sostenible y digital

by elEconomista.es 16/11/2022
Article by Pau Solanilla, Director of Fundació Rafael Campalans, ahead of the FEPS-Campalans event 'Figuring out the Twin Transition'

‘Wave of poverty’ expected to hit Brussels in winter, says social welfare expert

by Euronews 08/09/2022