Expert meeting | Climate and energy big picture 2030 after the European elections
On the 4th of July, Forum Energii organized a debate on EU post-elections priorities 2030 in the field of energy and climate. What are the challenges awaiting the next European Commission and Parliament? What should be the EU key priorities regarding energy transition in the next 10 years? We discussed it within a group of key organizations from the energy, climate and transport sector.
dr Joanna Maćkowiak-Pandera, Forum Energii
Speech by dr Michał Kurtyka, Secretary of State in the Ministry of Environment, President of COP24
Presentation by dr Piotr Arak, Polish Economic InstitutePobierz prezentację
Presentation by Matthias Buck, Agora Energiewende
followed by insights from key stakeholders i.a. FPPE, Konfederacja Lewiatan, PKEE, Veolia and others
Joanna Maćkowiak Pandera opened the conference pointing out the achievement of the Winter Package negotiations in December 2018. In the next years we will have to carry out the implementation of these key European regulations into domestic law. Just after the EU elections, it is now high time to answer to these questions: what do we expect from the European Commission and what do we have to offer?
In an opening speech, our guest speaker Michał Kurtyka, Secretary of State in the Ministry of Environment and President of COP24 in Katowice, recalled the international context and the need to take a decision on EU long-term climate strategy by the end of 2019, in light of the Paris Agreement. It is important for the European Union to have a concrete offer of its actions at the UN General Assembly in September. Climate neutrality is a civilizational choice, and as such bears high challenges for Poland, he added.
Piotr Arak, Director of The Polish Economic Institute, put forward the social dimension of energy transition, and proposed the creation of a Just Energy Transition fund (so-called JET) for countries like Poland.
Matthias Buck, head of European Energy Policy at Agora Energiewende, presented the results of the report “European Energy Transition 2030: the Big Picture”. He notably highlighted four implementation flagship initiatives for a social energy transition:
- renovate 1mln buildings by 2025,
- installation of 10 million solar rooftops by 2025,
- help 100 cities in Europe to decarbonize district heating and cooling networks,
- support a just transition in coal regions.
The presentations were followed by discussion. For everyone, the main issue at stake was the Polish veto on 2050 as date of achievement of climate neutrality. The discussion focused on priorities and costs of the energy transition. In this regard, it appears essential to show the benefits from decarbonizing the economy to the society.
Some participants emphasized a change in Polish energy strategy. It is no longer about whether to decarbonize or not the Polish economy, but how to achieve it and where to get the funding from. The debate focused on the opportunity of a new fund. Some participants clearly stated that priority should be given to obtain a maximum of funding from the EU in the form of a compensation to less advanced countries in energy transition, whereas others warned that an additional fund would not solve the complex issues of decarbonization. Politicians should first address the issue at national level and elaborate a comprehensive strategy, before seeking additional funding at EU level.
It is high time to use the revenues from the sale of CO2 emission allowances for low-emission modernization. Instruments for decarbonization are at disposal: EUR 4 to 9,8 billion from EU-ETS auctions and EUR 4,2 to 10,1 billion derogations for energy generation, EUR 2 to 5 billion from Modernization Fund, as well as EUR 2 billion each year for Coal Regions in Transition, do represent a significant pool of funding - to be used wisely. From a regulatory perspective, the implementation of the new EU Clean Energy Package, which consists of eight directives and regulations reforming in depth the energy sector, would already be a major step for Poland on the road to climate neutrality. Last but not least, the final Polish energy and climate plan for 2030 should entail priorities: addressing both smog and CO2 emissions thanks to cleaner heating, determining the place of gas in the energy mix and reforming the power sector to prepare the energy system for sector coupling, etc.
The participants of the meeting represented the following organizations: Forum CO2, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, NCAE, The Polish Economic Institute, PSE Innowacje, CEEP, PGE, WWF, KAPE, ECFR, Veolia, PKP Energetyka, FPPE and others.
Elaborated by Joanna Maćkowiak-Pandera and Delphine Gozillon
 Estimated funding from EU ETS reform for Poland 2021-2030, in M. Gałczyński, H. Koenig, W. Kukuła, F. Piasecki, J. Schiele, M. Stoczkiewicz, R. Zajdler, EU ETS Reform: How not to waste new opportunities to decarbonize the Polish economy, p.42, ClientEarth, 2019. http://www.zajdler.eu/raporty/show_pdf.php?ID=12