“Energy is a means to an end and one of the things that it should facilitate is industrial competitiveness”, said Christian Ehler MEP, EPP Group Spokesman on energy policy.
Later this afternoon, Members of the European Parliament will debate the State of the Energy Union. They will be taking stock of the progress that the EU is making in transitioning to clean energy, nearly two years after the launch of the European Green Deal.
“The Energy Union must provide our industry with the certainty that they will have access to enough energy and that the energy prices will not kill their competitiveness. The Energy Union must facilitate investments in clean tech innovation, energy infrastructure and the adaptation of our industry to the energy mix of the future”, declared Ehler.
Natural gas is essential for the transition and will facilitate the phasing-in of hydrogen. For hydrogen to play its crucial role in the future energy mix of Europe, we need the right political framework to develop our hydrogen infrastructure.
“What this means is that a new gas infrastructure should be suited to be retrofitted to transport hydrogen. Europe should develop a Europe Hydrogen Backbone, and make sure that decoupling is not forced upon the market at this time, as it will hold back investments without clear evidence that it will improve the energy market”, said Ehler.
Decoupling is the policy to force split ownership of infrastructure and the energy supply. Under such a policy, a company is not allowed to own a pipeline and at the same time use the pipeline to transport hydrogen it owns.
The EU is currently facing serious challenges of high costs of energy and also energy import dependency and security of supply, which damages the competitiveness of our industries in the global economy.
“Innovation lies at the heart of the decarbonisation of industry. There is no Energy Union and no Green Deal without innovation. To achieve climate neutrality while leading a global decarbonisation from an industrial standpoint, Europe must become a global innovation powerhouse for clean energy, clean mobility and smart buildings technologies. To do so, Europe must invest more and better in research and development. We believe in technology neutrality for effective research and innovation”, Ehler concluded.
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 178 Members from all EU Member States