European Parliamentary Research Service Blog

The EU is developing energy policies that aim to ensure security of supply, affordable energy for households and industry, and a reduction of carbon emissions in line with EU climate commitments.

A new global energy landscape

Secure, clean and affordable energy for Europe © Kautz15/ Fotolia

The global energy landscape keeps changing. Electricity from renewable sources has been gaining market share, but there are concerns that the higher cost of renewables brings electricity price increases. Solar and wind energy are variable, weather-dependent sources that need to be backed up by conventional power plants for as long as affordable large-scale energy storage is not available. The use of agricultural products for biofuels is considered to be playing a role in rising food prices.

Higher oil prices have made costly oil production methods (drilling in the deep sea and the Arctic, exploitation of tight oil and tar sands) economically interesting. Oil demand in developing countries has risen, with China…

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