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Public Utilities

The European Federation of Public Service Unions has a very active membership in the utilities sector. EPSU represents workers in public and private companies in the electricity, gas, water and sewerage and waste sectors.

The President of the EPSU standing committee for Public Utilities is Janne Rudén. The EPSU policy officer is Jerry Van Den Berge.

Find out who is your EPSU representative for public utilities here

What are the main issues for EPSU ?

A secure supply of energy, clean water, and sustainable waste management are basic needs for each individual in society. The users of these rights must be confident that their needs are being met; that they are provided for in fair and environmentally responsible manner at a just price. The best way of ensuring this is through public control, and even ownership, of the utilities and proper regulation – regulation of those private and public utilities that supply these needs,

- Find out more on introduction to public utilities

- Please read our positions on energy issues and our Press releases.

- Standing Committee Plan of Action 2009-2014, update 2011

- Pay and conditions in energy, waste and water - the WISUTIL project Conference, 26-27 September 2011


Safe and Clean Drinking Water EPSU is concerned about proposals of the European Commission to introduce competition in the Water Sector.

Research and Transnational Companies

Much of EPSU’s work in this area is available through the website of Public Services International Research Unit, section: reports.

World Day for Decent Work to focus on Climate Justice

(23 September 2014) The dominant global economic model is destroying jobs and the planet. This weakens democracy and undermines justice for all. The world’s trade unions are the most potent force to defend democracy and fight for justice and a sustainable future. Workers in Utilities (Energy, Water, Waste services) play a key role in transition to a sustainable society. On October 7 - the World Day for Decent Work, unions across the planet will be holding rallies, workplace activities, (...)

Shift taxes from labour to environment, EEA tells ministers.

(20 August 2014) Hans Bruyninckx, the director of the European Environment Agency, has urged EU ministers to carry out fiscal reforms, such as moving tax from labour to activities that damage the environment. The EEA issued environment and employment ministers this week with a report arguing that "greener" fiscal reforms can boost employment, while protecting the environment. Shifting tax away from labour, for example, makes it more attractive for employers to hire new people, boosting (...)

EU energy and climate framework 2030 package disappointing, says EPSU

(29 January 2014) The verdict of a discussion between EPSU trade unions on the proposals of the European Commission for the energy and climate framework 2030 was cristal clear: disappointing and not up to its task to guide the EU in the process of changing the energy system towards more sustainable production. Nothing on just transition despite the importance attached to it made in the Energy roadmap 2050 and Cancun agreement on climate change. Nothing on social dialogue and the role of (...)

40th meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Utilities

28 January 2014 Luxembourg, Plateau du Kirchberg, Jean Monnet Building, room M3 You are herewith invited to the 40th meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Utilities. It will take place on 28 January 2014 in Luxembourg, plateau du Kirchberg, Jean Monnet Building, room M3. The meeting will start at 9h00 and will end at 17h00. An area map is enclosed for information. Interpretation has been requested to and from English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Swedish. We have also (...)

EPSU demands US energy company FirstEnergy to end lock-out and return to negotiations

Lock out enters sixth week Update FirstEnergy and Penelec Continue Lockout despite Dangerous Winter Storm For immediate release: January 3, 2014 For more information contact: Robert Whalen, President, UWUA System Local 102, 724.454.4407 Altoona, Pa. Utility Workers Union of America System Local 102 today strongly criticized the ongoing lockout of nearly 150 utility workers by Pennsylvania electric utility Penelec and its parent company FirstEnergy, despite harsh winter weather (...)

EU energy policy needs new targets for renewables, energy efficiency and CO2 emission also in 2030

(26 September 2013) EPSU unions discussed the future policy goals of the EU for 2030 and confirmed the need for policy targets for renewables, energy efficiency and CO2 emissions for 2030 as an intermediate step towards near zero CO2 emissions in 2050. Just transition principles should be an integral part of EU policy. This was also confirmed by Benjamin Denis, energy advisor to ETUC. He informed members of the recent decisions of the ETUC and how the ETUC is arguing for Just transition (...)

PSI Global Energy Meeting (2 days)

24-25 September 2013, Luxembourg Luxembourg, plateau du Kirchberg, Jean Monnet Building, room M2 PSI unions will deal with the major challenges facing workers in energy and develop strategies to organise and mobilise in-country, by region and globally. We will ask 4-5 unions to help develop the agenda. Key issues which could be explored : Organising and mobilising in the energy sector Mapping the employers, the workers and our unions to achieve greater union density and power of (...)

39th meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Utilities

Energy unions: coherent energy policy needed for investment, jobs and economic growth

(5 March 2013) The EPSU utilities group had a comprehensive discussion on European Union energy policy. The internal market prevents that clear choices are made and is thus contributing to insecurity for companies which do not invest with closure of power plants causing social dramas in several countries with most recent example being EON that closes 5 (coal fired) power stations in France as well as a ultramodern and efficient gasfired power station in Germany. The market for (...)

38th Meeting of the Standing Committee on Public Utilities

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