Energy is essential for Europe to function. But the days of cheap energy for Europe seem to be over. The challenges of climate change, increasing import dependence and higher energy prices are faced by all EU members. Moreover the interdependence of EU Member States in energy, as in many other areas, is increasing – a power failure in one country has immediate effects in others.
Europe needs to act now, together, to deliver sustainable, secure and competitive energy. In doing so the EU would return to its roots. In 1952 with the Coal and Steel Treaty and 1957 with the Euratom Treaty, the founding Member States saw the need for a common approach to energy. Energy markets and geopolitical considerations have changed significantly since then. But the need for EU action is stronger than ever. Without this, the EU’s objectives in other areas, including the Lisbon Strategy for growth and jobs and the Millennium Development Goals, will also be more difficult to achieve. A new European Energy Policy needs to be ambitious, competitive and long-term – and to the benefit of all Europeans.
Commission of the European Communities. 2007. An Energy Policy for Europe: Communication from the Commission to the European Council and the European Parliament. Brussels: Commission of the European Communities.