New EU internal energy market design to address employment and energy poverty

(5 July 2016) The European Commission has made the Energy Union a key priority of its work.  As part of this, the European Commission has launched a public consultation  on a new internal energy market design. This should lead to a decline in CO2 emissions and hence be a contribution to realizing the Climate goals agreed in Paris. To consider these issues the European party of the (Green) Left (GUE/NLG) organized a workshop with several organisations to consider strategic choices and implications. EPSU and ETUC participated in the debate. Others came from various Left parties, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, Clientearth, consumer organisations, cities and researchers. EPSU stressed the importance of addressing the employment consequences of the transition for workers in the energy sector. The European Commission has still not reacted to a joint letter of the employers and the trade unions to have an impact assessment of the new market design. Together with ETUC we highlighted the importance of Just Transition and public investment.

The new set up for the energy market also provides an opportunity to deal with energy poverty. A study by the European Parliament has estimated that 50 to 125 million people in the EU suffered from energy poverty.

The meeting took place 27 June 2016 in the European parliament.