Europe has made an impressive step forward in energy efficiency over the past years, mainly thanks to policy and regulation. The implementation of #Ecodesign and Energy Labelling Directives is estimated to save 175 Mtoe primary energy per year by 2020, which corresponds to 19% savings with respect to business-as-usual energy use for those products. Thanks to this, for example on motor efficiency, the EU is now a global front-runner, whereas ten years ago it was still lagging behind the US. But at the same time, the aim should be to realize all energy efficiency measures that are cost-effective from a lifecycle point of view. To achieve this goal, a lot of work still remains to be done.
In OECD countries, electricity network losses amount to 7% of electricity produced. While these losses appear modest, at least half of them are avoidable in the long run. Addressing them is important since they are the highest when we can least afford them – at the time of peak load.
Since this tweet, the European Commission has regulated energy efficiency of distribution transformers under the Ecodesign Directive and requested plans for improvement of energy efficiency in energy networks through EED Art.15. Moreover, network regulators are gradually looking more into network losses and incentives for innovation, which includes highly efficient equipment.
This tweet was written during the regulatory process for the Energy Efficiency Directive. During the update of the same directive in 2018, it is worth repeating this message. It takes time for reality to follow regulation (or regulation to follow reality 😁?). The stock of efficient motors surpassed the share of 50% only 8 years after the efficiency regulation came into force. In the transition towards a decarbonized economy, the last steps are expected to be the hardest. Eventually we will be happy that stringent energy efficiency measures were taken, to avoid that state-of-the-art renewable energy needs to be wasted by energy-guzzling devices from another era.