Energy Council discusses how to improve EU energy security

At a meeting today in Brussels the Council of Ministers for Energy supported the Second Strategic Energy Review, which defines the priorities for securing energy security in the EU.

The Ministers of the Member States also discussed the selection criteria for energy projects. These projects will receive 3.75 billion EUR as part of the European Economic Recovery Plan.

“The gas crisis in January made it perfectly clear to the Europeans just how important it is to continue doing all we can to improve energy security in the EU. The Strategic Energy Review clearly indicates in which direction the efforts of the Member States should be directed in the years to come in order to secure long-term energy supplies. I am glad that the Member States today supported this strategy,” said President of the Energy Council and Czech Minister of Industry and Trade Martin Říman.

The Second Strategic Energy Review bears the title “An EU Energy Security and Solidarity Action Plan“. It mentions five main areas that the EU should focus on, i.e. development of energy infrastructure and diversification of supplies, consolidation of external energy relations, oil and gas stocks, energy efficiency and making the best use of the EU’s own energy resources. If the Spring European Council in March approves the Council conclusions on the Strategic Energy Review, they will become the starting point for working out a new EU energy action plan for 2013-2020. 

”Experiences with the gas crisis show that allocating a part of the resources intended for the EU economic recovery to the energetic sector was a very far-sighted decision. The objective of today’s meeting was not to select concrete projects but rather to initiate an expert debate on the technical criteria of projects so that they correspond with the targets of the European Economic Recovery Plan”, stated Minister Martin Říman.

Among the main general criteria considered are: added value of energy projects for the EU as a whole, level of application of innovative technologies, possibility of re-use of technologies, geographic balance with respect to location of projects and level of preparedness, so that their completion is realistic in a short period of time.

In case of projects from the gas sector, whose role is becoming increasingly important in the context of recent events, the Ministers discussed the criteria, such as contribution to the increase of storage capacities of natural gas, diversification of resources and routes, interlinking of transit routes with high-pressure gas pipelines and the possibility of reverse flow of gas from the West to the East.

During the morning meeting the Ministers also discussed legislation proposals whose aim is to increase energy security of the EU in the area of oil reserves and natural gas supplies. One of the priorities of the Czech EU Presidency is to quickly reach consensus on the directive on oil reserves. The objective of this proposal is to increase the functioning and reliability of the Community mechanism for oil distribution in case of crisis.

For more information please see the calendar


contact:

  • Tomáš Bartovský, spokesman of the Ministry of Industry and Trade
  • Tel.: +420 224 853 311, GSM: +420 602 508 328, E-mail: bartovsky@mpo.cz

Last update: 16.8.2011 15:44

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