Three questions to Commissioner Cañete
Miguel Arias Cañete is the European Commissioner for Energy and Climate Action. Here, he explains why the Clean Energy for All Europeans package is important and why it is the theme of this year’s EUSEW Policy Conference.
What is the "Clean Energy for All Europeans" package and how does it promote the Energy Union?
Roughly two years ago, we presented our Energy Union Strategy, where we set out a clear vision on how we wanted to future-proof our energy system and make it fit for purpose to respond to a changing energy landscape.
With this new package of proposals, published last November, we are outlining the necessary regulatory steps towards achieving the objectives we have set for ourselves. As its name suggests, this package is about providing "Clean Energy for all Europeans".
With the proposals that we have put on the table, we want to put energy efficiency first, make the EU a global leader in renewable energies and provide a fair deal for consumers so that they can benefit from a reliable, uninterrupted and affordable supply of clean energy at all times.
What are the package’s long-term goals and what measures in it can benefit Europeans in the near term?
The measures that we are putting forward will help Europe stay competitive in the global energy transition, boost jobs, growth and investment, turn the Paris Agreement on climate into concrete action and set the course for a clean and sustainable future.
These long-term, global objectives are joined by some tangible, more immediate results that will affect the lives of citizens all over Europe: by mobilising an additional EUR 177 billion of investments per year, this package can create as many as 900 000 new jobs across the energy sector. Our proposals will also increase the efficiency of buildings, speed up renovation rates, lower energy bills and help to lift 3.2 million households out of energy poverty.
As well as helping to reduce consumer bills, the package will enable more consumers to become active market participants generating, storing and selling their own electricity into the grid and embracing smart energy systems. Essentially, the new energy package can transform consumers from passive customers to active drivers of the energy transition.
How does EU Sustainable Energy Week support the package? What is your key message for this year’s edition?
Despite the current geopolitical uncertainties, Europe is forging ahead with the clean energy transition. There is no alternative. EUSEW is all about finding, discussing and promoting sustainable energy solutions around Europe. From renewable energy to decarbonisation technology to energy efficiency, EUSEW shines a light on European state-of-the-art technology and initiatives in sustainable energy.
The "Clean Energy for all Europeans" package will deliver the clear and stable regulatory framework that makes these solutions thrive on an even broader scale. Not only will the package enable a transition towards the energy system of tomorrow, it will boost the European economy along the way. So our message for this year's edition seems clear: clean energy solutions not only secure our energy future, they also bring jobs, growth and investment for all Europeans.