Fabian Demicoli

GRTU DG addresses Energy Islands & their Insularity at EESC


GRTU Director
General and EESC Employers Representative Vincent Farrugia has this week
participated at the EESC Transport, Energy, Infrastructure and the Information
society section meeting during which addressed the problems faced by Energy
Islands in Europe, particularly due to their insularity issues, making
reference to a very important EESC opinion on the issue.

 

 

Energy insularity
places the affected countries and regions in Europe at an economic, as well as
social and environmental disadvantage since they are often heavily dependent on
fossil fuels. It leads to significant price discrepancies, which contribute to
creating disparities in terms of solidarity and uniform development across
European regions.

 

Energy insularity
covers a range of varying circumstances, but which have virtually identical
consequences irrespective of the situation. Insularity can result in:

increased supply insecurity;

price variations, often with an upward trend, and
dependent industrial and trade activities;

more significant energy poverty for people in these
States or regions;

a negative impact on their economic competitiveness;

increased environmental pressure;

Instability in political and economic relations
between the EU and third countries.

 

Furthermore Demand
for energy is high and rising in energy islands. Given this situation, the
consequence of a potentially less reliable and significantly more expensive
supply is undermining the economic competitiveness of energy islands.
Similarly, high energy bills put significant pressure on household budgets.

 

The consequences
of energy insularity should be better assessed in terms of the growth,
competitiveness, and sustainable development of the affected regions as well as
in terms of solidarity, cohesion and "lost revenues" for the rest of
the EU due to the absence of a complete and functional energy market throughout
the EU.

 

Mr Farrugia
appealed to the Commission to give priority to the EESC Plenary Conclusions
that energy islands represent a cost for all. This cost must be evaluated and
the solutions for reducing it must be incorporated in a comprehensive approach.
The European energy policy has to be completed and granted appropriate means of
action, commensurate with both the Member States' level of interdependence and
the difficulties they encounter.  Within
this context Malta should be placed high up in the priority listing of energy
islands hit hardest by the energy insularity.

 

 

 

 

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