Energy consumption continues to rise in Europe: Eurostat

(EurActiv, 8 Feb 2019) Energy consumption in Europe rose for the third consecutive year in 2017, pulling the EU further away from its 2020 energy efficiency objective, according to official figures published on Thursday (7 February).

Energy consumption in the EU increased by 1% in 2017, according to Eurostat.

Primary energy consumption amounted to 1,561 million tonnes of oil equivalent (Mtoe), while final energy consumption reached 1,222 Mtoe. Both increased by around 1% compared to the previous year, Eurostat said.

Energy production and use, including transport fuels, account for some 80% of the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions, making energy consumption a key indicator in the fight against global warming.

In 2017, primary energy consumption in the EU was 5.3% above the efficiency target for 2020, while final energy consumption was 3.3% above target.

And the long-term trend is not encouraging either. Since 1990, consumption has fallen by only 0.4%, Eurostat indicated.

“The gap to energy efficiency target for 2020 continued to widen,” the EU’s statistical agency said in a note.

The EU has set itself a 20% energy savings objective for 2020, which is roughly equivalent to turning off 400 power stations, according to the European Commission.

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EurActiv, 8 Feb 2019: Energy consumption continues to rise in Europe: Eurostat