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CORDIS Express: Energy efficient Europe

This edition of CORDIS Express takes a look at research projects focused on energy efficiency, as well as related news and events.

Earlier this week the European Commission published its Energy Union Package, and one of the key dimensions is improving energy efficiency to help moderate demand. This follows just a few months after EU countries agreed on a new energy efficiency target of 27 % or greater by 2030. Energy efficiency is clearly on the EU’s hit list, and it’s not difficult to see why. According to the UN’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative, energy efficiency measures have the potential to deliver more than half the emissions cuts needed to keep the increase in global temperatures within 2°C. In the European context, although we have made significant progress in recent years, huge efficiency gaps still remain, particularly with regard to district heating and cooling which is the largest single source of energy demand in Europe. While new buildings today consume only half as much as typical buildings from the 1980s, 75 % of Europe’s housing stock is still energy inefficient. 64 % of space heaters are inefficient and 44 % of windows are still single glazed. These stark figures probably explain why energy efficiency is sometimes dubbed the ‘low hanging fruit’ in terms of tackling energy demand. The EU already has put in place ambitious measures to become more efficient in our energy consumption which are yielding results. Energy intensity in EU industry decreased by almost 19 % between 2001 and 2011. Meanwhile, our energy labelling and eco-design legislation are allowing consumers to make informed energy consumption choices and new efficiency and labelling standards for space and water heaters will soon start to impact the market. More efficient appliances are expected to save consumers EUR 100 billion annually by 2020 on their energy bills, equivalent to EUR 465 per household. New technologies, particularly in construction, manufacturing and transport have the potential to further improve energy efficiency. Research activities will play a huge part in this, and that’s why Horizon 2020 is supporting energy efficiency efforts which focus on buildings, industry, heating and cooling, SMEs and energy-related products and services, integration of ICT and cooperation with the telecom sector. The current H2020 energy efficiency call is open until 4 June 2015. A range of EU-funded projects are already tackling energy efficiency from a range of different angles. This edition of CORDIS Express takes a look at these ongoing efforts, as well as related news and events. - Better monitoring energy efficiency in buildings - Lighting the way to an energy-efficient Europe - Creating a responsive, energy efficient computing cloud - Trending science: Is your old tech bad for the environment? - Transforming the energy supply chain - Complete Vehicle Energy-saving Technologies for Heavy-Trucks - First Journal Conference on Clean Energy Technologies (JCCET 2015 1st)