Electricity social partners agree contribution to new European Energy Strategy

(24 June 2010) The European Commission has published a consultation document "[Towards a new European Energy Strategy 2011-2020-> http://ec.europa.eu/energy/strategies/consultations/2010_07_02_energy_strategy_en.htm]" The electricity social partners with Eurelectric for the employers side agree a {{[joint contribution->art6648]}}. The main points the contribution underlines are: - DG Energy and Social Partners should explore ways to cooperate in addressing the social dimension of future energy policies; - DG Energy – supported by DG Employment – should define a process to involve Social Partners in the Impact Assessment of new policy measures; - DG Energy and Social Partners should work together to identify measures to tackle job skills and needs in moving to a low-carbon energy system. The social partners further draw attention to the work they have done on [restructuring->art4761], on [Demographic change->art4221], and [CSR->art6581] and the ongoing work on [Just Transition->rub536]. The social partners had a further discussion on the social impact of smart meters. A representative of ENEL gave a presentation on the introduction of smart meters in Italy. An important point concerned the importance of providing training to close to workers in 3500 companies that installed the new meters, including the procedures when that installing a meter needed to be taken over by the company itself due to the complexity of situations. EPSU presented the first results of the smart meter survey. Main points included: - No in all countries is there an understanding of the possible employment and work organisation impact. Introducing smart meters could affect more than 5% of employees overall, or around 20% in distribution - There is a direct impact on meter readers (a function that might disappear) but also a significant impact on back office workers - Positive employment effects are possible (technical/ engineering groups) - The cost-benefit analyses when done, do not include employment related issues. The survey (file attached below) also raised a number of broader social issues: privacy protection, low-income user protection and addressing costs Jan Ruden added the experience from Sweden underlining the importance of doing the job with skilled workers. The union side proposed to explore a joint position and made a number of recommendations to that end. A Commission representative of the new [DG Climate Action->http://ec.europa.eu/climateaction/index_en.htm] presented the recent communication on exploring it the EU should go towards a 30% emission reduction target. The social partners will explore if there is ground for common work on this issue. Other issues addressed included: - Update on the state of affairs with the forthcoming communication on future of jobs and skills – foreseen for end of 2010 - Update on the Commission staff working paper on the sectoral social dialogue - Presentation on the [results of the 3rd Social Forum of the Energy Community->art6602] - Report on the last Steering Committee of the joint project on Just Transition Principles->rub536]. The [Joint Conference will take place on 13 December 2010->art6614]. The next meeting of the sectoral social dialogue committee is on 14 December 2010. The meeting took place on 23 June 2010, Brussels.
Presentation from Jan Nill, DG Climate Action, European Commission
Presentation from Riccardo Lama, ENEL