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This report provides an overview of the Energy Performance of Buildings directive and their implications for US companies. Improving the energy efficiency of buildings is seen as a way to reduce EU energy consumption and to lower CO2 emissions.
The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive covers energy needs for the heating of premises, the production of hot water, cooling, ventilation and lighting for new and existing buildings, whether they are residential or not. It sets minimum standards for the energy use of buildings in every Member State and introduces a certificate as a way to inform buyers or tenants of the energy performance of buildings.
MR-148/ Green Public Procurement
The EU actively supports and promotes Green Public Procurement (GPP) in the context of its policy on sustainable consumption and production, and public purchasers at all levels in the EU are increasingly aware of the need to meet specific environment policy goals and targets for greenhouse gas emissions, energy and waste reductions. EU Public Procurement Directives allow public contracting authorities to include environmental considerations into their procurement procedures for public works, services and supplies contracts. The Directives specifically mention the possibilities for adopting environmental considerations at the level of technical specifications, award criteria and contract performance clauses. With this focus, the European Commission hopes to boost green purchasing, thereby encouraging the development of environmentally friendly technologies for the marketplace. U.S. companies are advised to be aware of the tools that public purchasers use to implement those policy goals and this report aims to help them be well prepared to successfully bid on contracts.
The European Union has been focusing on the use of renewable energies for two main reasons; on the one hand it intends to ensure that carbon emission is reduced to pre-1990 levels and on the other hand it aims to diversify its energy resources and thus cut down on its dependence on fossil fuels. February 2015 saw the introduction of the Energy Union initiative (A Framework Strategy for a Resilient Energy Union with a Forward-Looking Climate Change Policy), which serves as a wider policy initiative guiding longer-term strategies and is supported by a number of Directives. EU climate and energy policies drive demand for innovative renewable energy technologies, products, and services that will help Members States achieve their ambitious climate change and energy objectives. This report explains how EU policies may affect U.S. exporters and their ability to enter the EU market.
MR-184 The EU Hydrocarbon Directive
With Europe's energy prices at levels double those of the United States, unconventional fossil fuels are gaining visibility on the European policy agenda, and the U.S. shale gas technology boom is boosting the debate in the EU. Today, EU Member States have diverging policies on shale gas exploration. While some are starting to develop policies aimed at encouraging shale gas exploitation, others are banning fracking. Nonetheless, the debate on high energy costs across the EU is leading European authorities to envision a common regulatory framework for a responsible expansion of unconventional oil and gas technologies that take into account todays’ environmental risks. This report outlines the current EU Hydrocarbon Directive 94/22/EC, which determines “The Conditions for Granting and Using Authorizations for Prospection, Exploration and Production of Hydrocarbons”, and expands on recent shale gas discussions at the EU level