Policy Paper 79
 
The role of gas in the external dimension of the EU energy transition
Sami Andoura,Senior Research Fellow, Notre Europe - Jacques Delors Institute and Clémentine d'Oultremont, Researcher, Egmont ? As an economically attractive option for investors, a potential backup source for renewables and the cleanest fossil fuel, natural gas is expected to play an important role in the European transition towards a low-carbon economy by 2050. At a time when European primary energy resources are being depleted and energy demand is growing, natural gas is becoming increasingly important to the EU. Consequently, the gas import dependency of the EU will continue to grow significantly in the coming years. However, if the EU wants to achieve its energy transition by 2050, gas must be considered as a mid-term rather than a long-term solution.

The EU is facing important challenges linked to its gas policy both internally, by attempting to create a competitive, interconnected and well-functioning internal market for gas; and externally, by struggling to develop a coherent and collective external strategy, which would allow it to both diversify and secure its gas supply from abroad.
|   04/03/2013             |   Sami Andoura   |   Clémentine d'Oultremont             |   Energy and environment
Policy Paper
 

This Policy
Paper is a contribution of Sami Andoura(Notre Europe – Jacques Delors Institute) et Clémentine d’Oultremont(Egmont), to the project Think Global – Act European (TGAE). Thinking strategically
about the EU’s external action
directed by Notre Europe –
Jacques Delors Institute
(report available in May 2013, dir. Elvire Fabry, Senior Research Fellow, Notre
Europe – Jacques Delors Institute).

As an economically attractive
option for investors, a potential backup source for renewables and the cleanest
fossil fuel, natural gas is expected to play an important role in the European
transition towards a low-carbon economy by 2050. At a time when European
primary energy resources are being depleted and energy demand is growing,
natural gas is becoming increasingly important to the EU. Consequently, the gas
import dependency of the EU will continue to grow significantly in the coming
years. However, if the EU wants to achieve its energy transition by 2050, gas
must be considered as a mid-term rather than a long-term solution.

The EU is facing important
challenges linked to its gas policy both internally, by attempting to create a
competitive, interconnected and well-functioning internal market for gas; and
externally, by struggling to develop a coherent and collective external
strategy, which would allow it to both diversify and secure its gas supply from
abroad.

Meanwhile, new sources of
unconventional gas could change the world’s energy markets with potential
consequences for the EU. However, many uncertainties remain regarding the
development of unconventional gas within the EU, especially on negative
environmental and climate impacts.

In view of all these challenges, it is crucial that
the EU clarifies its strategy regarding gas in the aim of improving its
security of supply and pursuing its efforts against climate change. This paper
will conclude by laying out concrete recommendations on how the EU could
strengthen its strategy with regard to gas.

Before the publication of the final report presenting the key recommendations of the 16 think tanks involved in the project, 5 series of policy papers address the following key challenges: migration,EU neighbourhood, CSDP, strategic resources and economic policy (publication on March 12th).

This Policy Paper is part of the series entitled “EU resource management: what European external action strategy?” which
includes contributions by Gonzalo Escribano (Elcano), Annika Ahtonen et Andrea Frontini (EPC), Nadège Chambon (Notre Europe – Jacques Delors Institute)etStephen Tindale (CER).

Go to the other contributions of the resource management series >>

Ce projet est mené avec le soutien du