European Commission public consultation on EU renewable energy rules – review


Published initiative by European Commission. Further information: European Commission.

Confederation of Finnish Industries EK represents the entire private sector and has 24 member associations and 16,000 member companies. We speak for employers of all sizes, from public limited companies to SMEs. Our member companies create jobs and welfare in Finland, and are responsible for 70% of exports, 70% of R&D expenditure, 2/3 of the GDP created by companies and 2/3 of the private sector jobs.

Climate change poses a systemic risk and opportunity to our societies. Finnish companies want to be at the forefront of ambitious climate action. Confederation of Finnish Industries EK is fully committed to the 1,5 C objective of the Paris agreement and the net-zero target for the EU by 2050.

The aim of the Commission has been to assess how the the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions could responsibly be reduced by to 55% by 2030. This assessment was released on 17th September. Already before the actual release EK stated that we will also take on the new challenge for 2030 and support the EU to raise the 2030 target to 50-55 %. It is an important milestone towards a carbon-neutral Europe in 2050 and would provide investment certainty for the coming decades.

Companies are in the core of the climate challenge by innovating, investing, and offering solutions globally. Achieving a more ambitious EU 2030 target will require companies to make unprecedented investments in less than a decade. In many cases the national implementation of the previously agreed 2030 target is still ongoing. At the same time, many novel solutions for reducing emissions in different sectors (electrification, sector integration, hydrogen economy) are rising rapidly and need to be considered as a part of these changes. All these trends highlight the need to carefully plan next steps in good cooperation with businesses. Companies need predictability and new incentives in balanced manner. Cost-efficiency and technology neutrality are key in implementation. An example of excellent cooperation between the public and private sector is the preparation of low-carbon roadmaps for different business sectors in Finland. One of the key findings from these roadmaps are the rapid decarbonization and electrification of the Finnish economy and the integrated nature of this transformation. National work on sector integration is ongoing together with the Finnish Government and we will be able to provide more detailed analysis of needed changes in due course.

On a general level we support the objective to explore how the review of the RES directive could help the EU to meet a more ambitious 2030 target and at the same time accelerate the transition to a more integrated energy system as outlined in the energy system integration & hydrogen strategies. On a more concrete level we find the need to foster electrification of the end-use sectors, better use of waste streams, increasing the penetration of renewable and low carbon fuels in different end-use sectors and while ensuring that all renewables are produced sustainably. We look forward to contributing to this work in the coming months and years.