Energy Security, Efficiency, and Climate Change

Hampton Roads International Security Quarterly, July 15, 2007 | Go to article overview

Energy Security, Efficiency, and Climate Change


THE UNITED STATES AND THE EUROPEAN UNION AGREE TO TAKE URGENT, SUSTAINED GLOBAL ACTION AND DEVELOP AN INTEGRATED POLICY APPROACH TO ENSURING SECURE, AFFORDABLE SUPPLIES OF ENERGY AND TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE. THIS DOCUMENT FROM THE 17TH EU-U.S. SUMMIT (APRIL 30, 2007 IN WASHINGTON) PROVIDES THE DETAILS OF THE JOINT US-EUROPEAN APPROACH TO ENERGY SECURITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION.

Ensuring secure, affordable supplies of energy and tackling climate change are central, interlinked global challenges facing the international community. Addressing these issues requires urgent, sustained global action and an integrated policy approach, using a wide range of regionally, nationally or internationally defined policy tools and measures. We are determined to ensure access to affordable, clean, and secure sources of energy to underpin sustainable global economic growth and to protect our environment. Tackling the challenge of energy security will also require unprecedented international cooperation in several areas, including increasing energy efficiency, market transparency, diversifying energy supplies including the share of renewable energies and protecting and maintaining the world's energy supply system.

We are committed to the ultimate objective of stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system, and we acknowledge the recent work of the IPCC. The respective responsibilities of industrialized and major emerging economies require strengthened action according to our national circumstances. Developing and commercializing advanced technologies will allow us to slow, stabilize and then significantly cut net global emissions of greenhouse gases. This requires strong economies and a wide range of policy instruments, including market based instruments, to generate technology investment and commercialization and achieve emission reductions. To achieve these objectives, we will work together and with other nations to deliver results in our global efforts to confront climate change through the upcoming G8 summit in Heiligendamm, our numerous multilateral partnerships, and by promoting a constructive agenda for the UNFCCC Conference in Indonesia in December 2007. We especially note the importance of advancing energy efficiency, near-zero emissions coal and renewables, including biofuels, in improving our energy security and reducing anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases. Nuclear energy can also contribute to reach these goals in countries that decide to use this option. We therefore affirm our commitment to accelerate the transformation of our energy infrastructure so that we can effectively tackle the interlinked challenges of climate change, energy security, and clean and sustainable development. As we usher in this Age of Energy Transformation, we will act together in true partnership to advance our shared climate, sustainable development, and energy security goals, using a mix of nationally, regionally or internationally defined policy tools to research, develop, deploy and commercialize clean energy technologies that will change the way we power our homes, businesses, and automobiles.

Complementary Goals:

Our common goals for clean energy development and commercialization in the near and medium-term include, but are not limited to, the following sectors:

Promoting Advanced Coal Technologies, including Near Zero Emissions:

- The European Union considers carbon dioxide capture and storage an important option in a broad portfolio of measures to reduce CO2- emissions. Given the early stage of some elements of the CCS- technology concept, the EU will establish a mechanism to stimulate the construction by 2015 of a network of up to 12 demonstration plants of sustainable fossil fuel technologies in commercial power generation. …

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