2024-02-24 10:45



Statement of the Friends of the Earth Italy in the Italian Senate hearing: We need to concentrate resources on improving energy efficiency, avoid the failure of the climate and energy policies.

Statement of the Friends of the Earth Italy in the Italian Senate hearing: We need to concentrate resources on improving energy efficiency, avoid the failure of the climate and energy policies.

Friends of the Earth Italy took part on May 28th, 2014, in a hearing of the Senate Committee on Industry on the new goals of climate policy in the EU: "The goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 is sharedby us - said Rosa Filippini, president of the Association - but we cannot ignore the fact that this achievement is very challenging and must be conjugated with a scenario of economic growth to emerge from the crisis and to prevent the depletion of the country productive tissue.

In this sense, the Commission's Communication appears largely inadequate and likely to perpetuate the misconception concerning the penetration of renewable energy sources, in particular those plants assigned the role of main drivers of the reduction of greenhouse gases. The weak points are the lack of targets in 2030 for energy efficiency and an adequate conjugation of this objective with consistent objectives of economic and industrial policy.

It is therefore necessary that the EU bypasses an inadequate approach, and that the European policies on energy and climate for the 2030 framework set out a goal for energy efficiency as a priority and a fundamental tool for the reduction of greenhouse gases. This change should be one of the first targets for the Government in the next six months of the EU Italian presidency.

For Italy, the Friends of the Earth ask for a net turn-around in respects to the errors made over the last five years, with excessive incentives for renewable electric sources, that currently impact on bills for more than $ 13 billion per year, compounding the crisis effects on small and medium-sized enterprises and reducing the possibility of an adequate energy efficiency promotion.

In the document “Proposals for new energy efficiency policies” the association suggests a 2030 target of overall improvement in energy efficiency by 20% compared to 2010, equivalent to the average annual energy efficiency improvement of 1.5%. In Italy, assuming a scenario with an average annual growth rate of real GDP by 1% in view of 2030, a more rapid growth in energy efficiency compared to economic growth would result in a significant reduction in energy intensity and in level of primary energy consumption (-20% about, with a shift from 165 Mtoe in 2010 to about 130 in 2030).

Within this scenario, it is possible to predict a 2030 penetration of renewable sources of 30%, a level which, together with energy efficiency that it would achieve the target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. However, certain conditions are necessary.

First of all, we need to concentrate the maximum effort to support a goal of 35% renewable heat (14.5% in 2013). For this purpose, there may be significant policies synergies to promote (incentives and regulation) with the process of upgrading the energy efficiency of buildings (residential and tertiary sectors).

For transport it is conceivable a ERS target of 20% (6% in 2013).

A level of renewable electricity up to 40% (33% in 2013) should be spontaneously achieved, with a growth rate of 0.5% per annum, eliminating every incentive to large plants for commercial production and focusing on the diffusion of small photovoltaic systems for households and firms consumption and for biomass plant or geothermal cogeneration service units and district heating networks that can also find forms of support in synergy with programs to improve energy efficiency.

The Friends of the Earth Italy proposal involves a comprehensive review of policies to support the achievement of an energy and environment balance:

  • Immediate cessation of incentives for large wind farms and for plants producing only electricity for commercial purposes;
  • Taxation of the excess revenue that many plants producing renewable electricity realised in the last decades. We have estimated that the revenue from such a measure should be of the order of at least one billion per year;
  • Allocation of this revenue to the strengthening of incentive instruments for the promotion of energy efficiency.

To read the full text of the proposals for new energy efficiency policies click here

English Version