The strategy described in this document builds on a number of strengths and lessons learnt from the application of current policies, as well as from the effectiveness of the European Union's response to previous energy supply crises. According to the report, Europe has made significant progress towards completion of the energy internal market with increased interconnections; it has one of the best records worldwide in terms of energy intensity and a more balanced energy mix than its major partners.
However, too often energy security issues are addressed only at a national level without taking fully into account the interdependence of Member States. The key to improved energy security lies:
- in a more collective approach through a functioning internal market;
- in greater cooperation at regional and European levels, in particular for coordinating network developments and opening up markets;
- in a more coherent external action, ensuring through the enlargement instruments that these guiding principles are followed by candidate countries and potential candidates.
According to the Communication, significant energy savings can be achieved if the measures foreseen in the relevant legislation are implemented rigorously and without delays. In particular, this applies to the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) and the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD).
Energy demand in the building sector, responsible for about 40% of energy consumption in the EU and a third of natural gas use, could be cut by up to three quarters if building renovation is speeded up. Also, improvements in district heating and cooling can make an important contribution.
To download the document, please visit the relevant European Commission website: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/ALL/?uri=CELEX:52014DC0330