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EURACTIV ENERGY and ENVIRONMENT WEEKLY | EU closer to 'genuine Energy Union' as MEPs support gas supply solidarity

 

ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT WEEKLY

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

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ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT WEEKLY

Check out our latest coverage in our ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT WEEKLY policy hub or follow our latest updates on @eaEnergyEU
By Frédéric Simon (@FredSimonEU), Sam Morgan (@SamJamesMorgan), Paola Tamma (@paola_tamma)

EU closer to ‘genuine Energy Union’ as MEPs support gas supply solidarity[Energy & Environment / News] European lawmakers approved on Tuesday (12 September) a new security of gas regulation, which includes a solidarity principle in case of supply disruptions and will make it more difficult for other countries to 'blackmail' the EU's members.

EU warned against renewables law ‘subverting’ the circular economy[Energy & Environment / News] Lawmakers in the European Parliament will next month examine a draft renewable energy bill that recycling industries warn would allow EU countries to count the burning of biowaste towards their green energy obligations, undermining separate efforts to boost recycling.

Poland to treat coal addiction by embracing nuclear power[Energy & Environment / News] Poland's ongoing large-scale investment in three new coal-fired power plants may be the country's last fossil fuel venture, its energy minister said on Wednesday (6 September), indicating a possible energy shift in the EU's largest eastern member amid revived plans to embrace nuclear power.

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LIVE: From scenarios to a vision for the future of Europe[Agrifood / Video] European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker will give his annual State of the European Union address at the European Parliament on Wednesday morning. EURACTIV.com brings you live coverage, analysis and background from Strasbourg.

United in Diversity? What Europe can do with its energy policy[Energy & Environment / Opinion] As the energy market is being shaken up by the arrival of new local players, one crucial objective should be to guarantee diversity in the governance representation, write Claire Roumet and Dirk Vansintjan.

Eurelectric: EU carbon market reform ‘won’t get us to 2050’[Energy & Environment / Interview] The energy transition requires deep CO2 emissions cuts of 80-95% across the economy by 2050, says Kristian Ruby. “And the current proposal won’t get us there,” he told EURACTIV.com as three-way talks to reform the EU Emissions Trading Scheme get underway.

Palm oil for fighter jets: Under EU attack, producers seek alternatives[Global Europe / News] Facing a backlash in Europe over palm oil's environmental toll, the world's top producers are scrambling to find new markets and even striking unusual barter deals, such as exchanging Sukhoi fighter-bombers for the edible oil.

EU auditors praise water quality efforts in new member states[Global Europe / News] European Union funding has been well spent on improving drinking water quality by Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania, according to a new report by the European Court of Auditors. But a funding gap could undermine progress made so far.

Poland, Commission clash in top court over ancient forest[Global Europe / News] The European Union executive asked the bloc's top court yesterday (11 September) to fine Poland for violating a ban on logging in an ancient forest, but Warsaw said it was only trying to preserve unique woods.

UK renewables boosted as costs fall below price of nuclear power[Energy & Environment / News] Offshore windfarms are to be built for a record low price in the UK early next decade, after developers bid far more aggressively than expected for a multimillion-pound pot of government subsidies. EURACTIV’s partner The Guardian reports.

John Cooper: On fossil fuels, the European public is ‘a little bit misled’[Transport / Interview] A lot is at stake for the energy security of Europe if political correctness was to dictate imposing one technology against the other, John Cooper, Director General of FuelsEurope told EURACTIV.com.

Solar industry says EU tariffs on Chinese imports will raise panel prices[Economy & Jobs / News] Europe’s solar industry has condemned an EU vote to impose another round of duties on Chinese imports, just weeks before a US trade panel is due to rule on similar tariffs. EURACTIV’s partner The Guardian reports.

Opening new frontiers in green finance[Economy & Jobs / Opinion] What do Islamic investors and EU bureaucrats have in common? Both have entered the green bond market this summer, explain Harald Lund and Elisabeth Lannoo.

EU lawmakers back 40% energy efficiency target for 2030[Transport / News] MEPs agreed on Thursday (7 September) to raise the bloc's proposed energy efficiency targets post-2020 in order to improve chances of meeting EU obligations under the Paris Agreement on climate change.

Will the 2030 EU Energy Package protect the right to energy for all Europeans? [Energy & Environment / Opinion] The EU’s package has to rise to the challenge. Awareness on the causes and consequences of energy poverty has been increasing for a decade and now is the time for action, writes the Right to Energy Coalition.

Climate change is everyone’s business – the ECB is no exception[Economy & Jobs / Opinion] Whilst the European Union is firmly committed to joining the fight against climate change and developing sustainable finance, the significance of the role the European Central Bank can play is being overlooked, write Ludovic Suttor-Sorel and Frank van Lerven.

MEPs criticise Commission’s ‘flawed’ policy on post-2020 biofuels[Agrifood / News] The European Commission's “scientifically unfounded” U-turn on biofuels will have significant implications for the agriculture sector and risks increasing the imports of GM animal feed from third countries, lawmakers warn.

Plastic fibres found in tap water around the world, study reveals[Health / News] Microplastic contamination has been found in tap water in countries around the world, leading to calls from scientists for urgent research on the implications for health. EURACTIV’s partner The Guardian reports.

Report: Switzerland lost 90% of its ponds within two centuries[Energy & Environment / News] Intensive agriculture has gradually dried them out, and soils are no longer able to handle violent rains, creating increased flooding and lethal mud slides. EURACTIV's partner Ouest-France reports.

MEPs fear exposure to radioactive ‘Fukusushi’ if EU relaxes Japan import controls[Agrifood / News] The European Parliament’s environment committee (ENVI) adopted on Thursday (7 September) a resolution condemning the Commission’s plans to relax controls on the radioactivity of Japanese food and feed imports following the 2011 Fukushima disaster.

Tilos: The first Mediterranean island to go off the grid[Energy & Environment / News] Tilos, in Greece, is the first island in the Mediterranean to be fully self-sufficient for its energy, thanks to strong investment in renewables. Its success is a lesson for all island communities in Greece and elsewhere. Euractiv Italy reports.

Denmark can’t block Nord Stream 2, lawyer argues[Energy & Environment / News] Copenhagen will have a hard time blocking the Gazprom-backed Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline passing through its territorial waters because it has already allowed Nord Stream 1 to use the exact same route, according to an attorney.

Nord Stream 2 and the Energy Union: Friends or foes?[Energy & Environment / Video] The Energy Union is one of the flagship initiatives of the Juncker Commission. It aims at strengthening the EU’s energy security and ensure the functioning of the internal energy market.

Better energy efficiency measures could cut UK costs by billions[Energy & Environment / News] More efficient use of energy in the UK would save as much power as could be generated by six new nuclear reactors and shave £7.5bn (€8.1bn) from energy costs, experts have calculated. EURACTIV's partner The Guardian reports.

France bans production of hydrocarbons[Energy & Environment / News] French Ecology Minister Nicolas Hulot proposed on Wednesday (6 September) a bill to end the modest production of hydrocarbons in France, hoping to lead by example. EURACTIV's partner Ouest France reports.

German minister: Berlin needs to halve coal capacity by 2030 to meet Paris goals[Health / News] Germany would have to shut 25 gigawatts (GW), half its current total coal-fired power station capacity, by 2030 to meet carbon-cutting targets it has committed to under the Paris Agreement, deputy economy minister Rainer Baake said on Tuesday (5 September).

Will the European Parliament take the high road on climate and forests?[Energy & Environment / Opinion] Ahead of a European Parliament vote on land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF), Hannah Aho explains how MEPs have both strengthened and weakened draft forest rules she says are essential in the fight against climate change.

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