Media Centre

Media Centre - Position Papers

position papers
19 May.2017

Statement from the alliance of energy intensive industries on the clean energy for all europeans package

We, the Alliance of Energy Intensive Industries representing more than 30,000 companies that are Europe’s largest energy consumers and together, directly employ more than 2.8 Million people, want to make a success of the Energy Union. We see it as a potential enabler of European industry’s competitiveness and a unique opportunity to deliver on Europe’s ambitious transition to a low-carbon energy system. Energy Intensive Industries make a series of recommendations to reach this ambition in an effective, secure and cost-conscious way that delivers value for investment to European economic contributors such as industry. The Alliance would welcome a new energy framework that:
- ENABLES INNOVATION IN INDUSTRY SECTORS THAT DEVELOP PRODUCTS AND TECHNOLOGIES leading to lower greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) across value chains. Our industries offer low-carbon solutions to help Europe transitioning to a low-carbon, energy efficient region. Our products and innovative processes have a strong potential to enable greater energy efficiency or help the wider deployment of renewables;
- PUTS THE GLOBAL COMPETITIVENESS DIMENSION HIGH Our industries will be key in delivering several elements of the Clean Energy Package. The Governance of the Energy Union must acknowledge this and not relegate the competitiveness dimension as secondary to other aspects, but increase its prominence;
- SECURES INDUSTRY’S ACCESS TO COMPETITIVE, RELIABLE, AND SUSTAINABLE ENERGY through a fully liberalised European electricity market. The growing share of variable renewable energy production in the grid represents both a challenge and an opportunity for industry. Negative impact of system changes on industry and on security of energy supply must be avoided. Policy framework conditions should be nondiscriminatory, technology-neutral and predictable over the longer term to enable sustainable investment decisions;
- AVOIDS COSTLY AND UNNECESSARY OVERLAPPING LEGISLATION: The EU ETS and the Market Stability Reserve will lead to a higher price of carbon under the 2030 framework. It is therefore important that new measures do not overlap with ETS, adding an additional layer of obligations for industry, but rather target untapped potential laying in e.g. buildings or mobility sectors. Enabling better energy performance in those sectors would stimulate our economy and create new jobs and growth opportunities;
- CLEARLY DIFFERENTIATES ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND REDUCTIONS IN INDUSTRIAL ACTIVITY: looking at levels of energy consumptions in the different sectors of our economy, it is clear that so far the 2020 objective is being partly met through reduced levels of production. Our industries wish to contribute to growth in Europe while, at the same time, improving their energy efficiency performance; in this framework, it is relevant to assess reduction of energy consumption in relative terms;
- INTEGRATES RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES IN A COST-EFFICIENT MANNER: as long as it is in place, support to renewable energies must become cost-efficient and must focus on technology-neutral innovation. Support
schemes should be market-based and market responsive. They should only benefit technologies that are not yet mature, on a temporary basis.

As key players in the transition to a low-carbon economy, energy intensive industries and value-chain partners will provide constructive input into the decision-making process.


 

Read more

02 May.2017

“No trade-off on Fairness”: Recommendations from the Alliance for a fair ETS

The Parliament, the Council and the Commission enter now the trilogue negotiations that will shape the ETS directive after 2020.

We, the 17 signatories of this paper, energy-intensive sectors representing about 2 million jobs in the EU and comprising many SME’s, are fully committed in taking our share of responsibilities and reducing our emissions.
However, we are also very concerned by the impact that some proposed measures would have on our global competitiveness.

We stand by one principle: sufficient free allowances must be available to allocate every carbon leakage installation at the level of the benchmark, as to avoid additional direct and indirect costs, resulting from the implementation of the ETS that are not faced by our non-EU competitors.

This is true more than ever, especially when some measures, which have been proposed without any impact assessment on our sectors, might have a dramatic impact on our competitiveness if adopted without the necessary flexibility in the share of free allocation, like the permanent cancellation of allowances, or the doubling of the intake rate of the MSR.

We therefore ask the trilogue negotiators to acknowledge, in their final compromise, the mutual importance of our sectors for the EU economy, in particular for European jobs, and all our economic value chains by:

1) Ensuring enough free allowances are available to allocate all carbon leakage installations at the level of the benchmark. This is not a free lunch for industry as less than 5% of the installations will receive enough to produce, the remaining 95% will have to buy allowances. We therefore support the Parliament proposal to reduce the auctioning share by max 5% (from 57% to 52%) if the CSCF is necessary.

2) Rejecting any approach which aims at discriminating a few from other sectors exposed to carbon leakage risks, namely the “tiered CSCF” in the event that the 5% reduction mentioned above is not sufficient. This discrimination between industrial sectors goes against the principle set in the October European Council Conclusions that best performing companies in ETS carbon leakage sectors should not bear further carbon costs. Indeed, a tiered CSCF would entail that even best performers in most sectors would bear significant carbon costs.

3) Supporting the proposal from the Parliament by which the Innovation fund is fully financed from the auctioning share.

Signatories:
1. Cefic - European Chemical Industry Council
2. CEMBUREAU – European Cement Association
3. CEPI – Confederation of European Paper Industries
4. Cerame-Unie - European Ceramic Industry Association
5. EDG – European Domestic Glass Association
6. Epmf – European Precious Metals Federation
7. European Copper Institute
8. ESGA – European Special Glass Association
9. EUROALLIAGES - Association of European ferro-Alloy producers
10. EUROGYPSUM - Gypsum Industry
11. EuLA – European Lime Association
12. EXCA - European Expanded Clay Association
13. FEVE – The European Container Glass Association
14. FuelsEurope - European Petroleum Refining Industry
15. Glass Fibre Europe – The European Glass Fibre Producers Association
16. Nickel INSTITUTE
17. International Zinc Association

Read more

29 Mar.2017

Joint letter on alignment of Renewable Energy Directive with the Circular Economy Policies

TO: Members of the European Parliament ITRE Committee

Subject: Alignment of the revision of the Renewable Energy Directive with the Circular Economy Policies

Dear Members of the ITRE Committee,
Ahead of the report of the ITRE committee on the revision of the EU Renewable Energy Directive (RED II), the undersigned organisations, representing plastic and paper recyclers and zero waste associations around Europe, would like to bring to your attention our concerns as regards to inconsistency of the Commission’s proposal in RED II with the Circular Economy policies and the EU’s climate policy agenda.

This is due to the consideration of the biomass fraction of mixed municipal solid waste as a source of renewable energy when it is actually burning thanks to other materials (e.g. plastics and paper). Member States are consequently allowed to support various forms of energy generation from waste, to meet targets set under the RED II. These schemes which support waste-to-energy generation from mixed municipal waste, run counter to the EU’s transition to a low-carbon and circular economy, furthermore this would work to:

1. Undermine the Waste Hierarchy and the Circular Economy policies
Financial support for waste-to-energy from mixed municipal waste subverts one of the cornerstones of the EU waste policy – the waste hierarchy -, which establishes an order of priority in waste prevention and management i.e. prevention, preparation for re-use, recycling, other recovery (energy recovery), and disposal1. Waste is therefore meant to be firstly prevented, then prepared for reuse and, finally, recycled. Conversely, the RED II classifies it as a source of ‘renewable energy’ and allows renewable energy support schemes that conflict with the waste hierarchy by encouraging waste-to-energy processes, which is the second least desirable option of the waste hierarchy.

The effect so far has been a clear distortion of the market whereby investment in waste infrastructure and operation costs are organised on the basis of subsidies for the extraction of energy from waste instead of sound environmental and economic performance of the best waste management option. As a result, several European countries e.g. Denmark have overinvested in energy-from-waste plants whilst underinvesting in recycling facilities.

2. Undermine the Communication on Waste-to-Energy in the Circular Economy
The RED II also contradicts the Commission’s recent Communication on the Role of Waste-to-Energy in the Circular Economy which states that public financing of waste management, whether national or at EU level, should be consistent with the waste hierarchy and Member States should phase-out public support for the recovery of energy from mixed waste in line with the separate collection obligations and more ambitious EU recycling targets proposed in the legislative proposal on Circular Economy2.
1 http://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/framework/pdf/guidance_doc.pdf
2 http://ec.europa.eu/environment/waste/waste-to-energy.pdf

3. Undermine the EU’s Climate Policy Agenda
The Commission’s proposal also undermines the EU’s climate agenda by supporting energy generation from mixed municipal waste, which is never solely composed of biogenic carbon. Much of the calorific value from waste-to-energy processes from mixed waste (incineration, pyrolosis or gasification) comes from the treatment of fossil carbon based materials such as plastics. For example, a typical waste incineration facility has a carbon intensity of approximately 600 kg CO2 eq. per MWh of electricity. This compares with a figure of 380 kg CO2 per MWh of electricity at an efficient natural gas power station using Combined Cycle Gas Turbine technology3.
Moreover, the monitoring of the amount of the proportion of organic waste compared to the amount of fossil-based waste in municipal mixed waste is both logistically and technologically difficult. It’s often assumed that the proportion is 50% - even if industrial and commercial waste is frequently included in the mix of waste entering a waste-to-energy facility. Given the heterogeneity of waste and the great differences from plant to plant, this percentage is neither constant nor reliable, which supports the evidence that much of the so-called renewable energy from waste-to-energy comes in fact from incinerating fossil carbon based materials.

The undersigned organisations therefore urge the members of the ITRE Committee to align the Commission’s proposal for a revised Renewable Energy Directive with the circular economy policies by explicitly excluding primes of subsidies for waste-to-energy generation from the mixed municipal solid waste.

Kinds regards,
On behalf of signatories
Joan Marc Simon
ZWE Executive Director
Contacts:
Janek Vahk, Development and Policy Coordinator, Zero Waste Europe: janek@zerowasteeurope.eu
Ulrich Leberle, Raw Materials Director, The Confederation of European Paper Industries: u.leberle@cepi.org
Antonino Furfari, Managing Director, Plastics Recyclers Europe: antonino.furfari@eupr.org
3 https://www.zerowasteeurope.eu/downloads/the-potential-contribution-of-waste-management-to-a-low-carbon-economy/

Read more

22 Mar.2017

Position Paper on LULUCF

CEPI position on the Commission proposal for a regulation on the inclusion of GHG emissions and removals from LULUCF into the 2030 climate and energy framework

Main Goal:

The main goal for the European pulp and paper industry in the debate on climate change and forestry is to work on a policy framework enabling the long term sustainable management of European forests. This is in line with the conclusions of chapter 9 of the 4th Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC): “In the long term, a sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fibre or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitigation benefit.”

Main Concern:

The main concern of the European pulp and paper industry is that proposals for the inclusion of GHG emissions and removals from LULUCF focus on the 2030 horizon and forest sequestration. Meanwhile the potential of the other aspects of sustainable forest management such as the absorption of carbon by more dynamic forest management and storage and substitution of wood products replacing fossil based ones would not be sufficiently recognised and harvesting levels would be reduced.

The European pulp and paper industry is a key contributor to the bioeconomy. It uses wood from sustainably managed forests to produce renewable and recyclable products which substitute more carbon intentive products.. In addition, the European pulp and paper industry produces bioenergy with highly efficient combined heat and power generation. Further increasing the efficiency of the wood use, the industry is developing new products based on wood to grow the bioeconomy and even more substitute fossil based materials. The mitigation potential could be further improved by further supporting the growth of forests, dynamic forestry and the mobilisation of wood, the use of wood-based products, high value added products, the cascading use principle and strengthening innovation in new bio-based products.

Accurately accounting the emissions/removals from the sector is crucial to demonstrate that European forests and the use of its products have a positive contribution to climate change, as forests absorb carbon from the atmosphere and sequester it. Harvested wood products store carbon and substitute fossil based products. Along the chain, wood, harvesting residues and industrial residues are also used to produce bioenergy substituting fossil fuels. (Replacing fossil fuels by bioenergy is an interim target on the way to bio-based value chains creating high value added from products, materials and fuels.)

In the last decades, forests in Europe have been growing both in surface and in growing stock. Looking ahead, Chapter 9 of the 4th Assessment Report of the IPCC states: “In the long term, a sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fibre or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitgigation benefit. Most mitigation activities require up-front investment with benefits and co-benefits typically accruing for many years to decades. The combined effects of reduced deforestation and degradation, afforestation, forest management, agro-forestry and bioenergy have the potential to increase from the present to 2030 and beyond”. The combined climate change mitigation effect should be maximised. Therefore disproportionate measures on one of these elements should be avoided.

In this context CEPI and its members welcome the recognition of forests and forest products in the EU’s new climate and energy policy framework 2020-2030 and the inclusion of the land use, land use change and forestry sector in the framework.

Even though the proposal is on a 10 year period, it should incentivise the long term carbon benefits of forests and the bio-economy. The inclusion should not lead to an optimisation for the 2020 to 2030 period. In the long term, Europe will need more wood products.

The regulation should provide a framework incentivising Member States to promote a forest management, which increases the capacity of its forests to take carbon out of the atmosphere and at the same time store it in products that substitute fossil products.

The Commission proposal includes several positive principles:

Emissions from the land use sector are reported when harvesting takes place. Carbon emissions should be accounted once. Emissions from the combustion of biomass should therefore accounted as zero to avoid double counting. This also ensures the climate effect of the wood use is allocated to the country in which the trees are harvested.

Harvested Wood Products (HWP) are recognised as carbon pools contributing to the mitigation efforts. We believe this is a very important element of the framework, as HWP provide a mitigation potential well below the 2020-2030 period.

Flexibility between LULUCF and the effort sharing sector is limited to afforestation. This gives Member States with potential for afforestation the possibility to use this abandoned land for afforestation. The potential for afforestation is varying strongly between Member States. However, we believe it is not necessary to limit this flexibility to 280 million tons of CO2. There should not be flexibility between LULUCF and effort sharing sector for forest management.

 We believe that the Commission should continue work towards international progress in carbon accounting and encourage other world regions to account for their emissions from LULUCF, particularly countries from which the EU is sourcing wood for bioenergy and products. A credible and though workable scheme in Europe could facilitate the uptaking of similar initiatives in other world regions. Such bottom-up approach has proven successful in the Paris agreement. 

Finally we welcome the fact that the proposal is directed to the Member States rather than smaller entities. This ensures the contribution from forestry is regarded upon in landscape approaches and with long time frames.

The Commission proposal contains provisions to be improved:

The framework should be comprehensive and as flexible as possible to further allow Member States to develop policies based on their national conditions.

 Forest management reference levels should be set on the basis of long timeframes in order to better reflect trends and responses to climate change policies and measures already in force. These timeframes should enable reference levels to emphasise the impact of most recent policy instruments affecting forest resources, forest management and use of forest products in the country.

The setting of projections based on reference levels has to be credible and transparent and should be based on subsidiarity in forest related issues. The European Commission’s role should be focused on ensuring harmonised country established reference levels and on ensuring credibility and transparency rather than a centralised recalculation on those national elements.

The criteria for the establishment of forest reference levels should be reviewed and better focused on carbon relevant criteria. Biodiversity conservation is already addressed in specific EU and national legislation and this should be reflected in policy.

The option chosen by the Commission is based on the no-debit rule. CEPI believes the no-debit rule is crucial in the LULUCF proposal to demonstrate that the forest sector acts as a sink. However, we believe that Member States demonstrating they harvest less than the net annual increment should not be sanctioned.

 

Read more

13 Mar.2017

Placing competitiveness at the heart of the ‘Energy Package’

In view of the European Commission's publication of its Winter Energy package, the European paper industry has compiled a position paper outlining its stance on key aspects of the proposal. Here are our key messages:

Deliverables expected by “Clean energy for all Europeans” package, as a whole:

• Promotion of cost-competitive energy prices
• Consistency between policy measures
• Stability and predictability of the regulatory framework

Deliverables expected by specific legislative proposals:

Electricity markets
• Allowing for market-based prices to show real value of electricity
• RES generators should participate in the markets in the same way as all other generators
• Subsidies to RES-E should not be allowed to distort wood supply markets
• Security of electricity supply to energy intensive industry must be secured
• Demand flexibility should be voluntary and rewarded
• The benefits of CHP should be recognised (efficiency, cost effective, energy security, resource efficiency)
• EU should not create more bureaucracy or official bodies / authorities

Energy Union Governance
• No to a binding cap on energy consumption impeding industrial growth
• Increased mobilisation of forest biomass is essential in reaching the 2030 renewable energy target
• Need for a real focus on industrial competitiveness
• Reduction of administrative burden for business needs to be prioritised
• Need to avoid/minimise policy conflicts and overlaps

Energy Efficiency
• The directive should not set a binding EU cap on energy consumption
• Member States should be allowed to set their own indicative targets
• Costs and potentials varies across Member States: there is no one-size-fits-all energy savings trajectory
• Equal footing between obligation schemes and alternative measures needs to be preserved
• Cogeneration to remain at the core of the Energy Efficiency Directive

Renewable energy
• Support schemes should not distort wood markets and should stimulate supply of wood
• Opening up to national schemes to cross-border participation in electricity markets should lead to more market integration, not to harmonised subsidies
• Guarantees of origin should remain as trade description, not to be used as subsidies
• There is no “one size fits all” in heating and cooling: focus should be on flexibility and cost-efficiency
• Emission reduction in transport should cost-efficiently drive renewable energies in transport (RES-T) integration into the market while not resulting in transportation costs increased
• Our industry is an emerging producer of RES-T solutions mainly from wastes and residues, such as advanced biofuels, biogas, excess electricity from bio-based pulp and paper mills...
• Bureaucracy and costs should be avoided when implementing sustainability criteria

The full position paper can be consulted via the link below.

Read more

09 Mar.2017

Waste Framework Directive: European material industries renew call for measurement of real recycling rates

Europe‘s metals, steel and paper industries renew their call for a harmonised method to measure Member State recycling rates at input into the 'final recycling process'. The full document can be consulted via the link below.
Read more

17 Oct.2016

Review of Directive on the charging of heavy goods vehicles for the use of certain roads

We welcome the European Commission’s intention to create a technically interoperable system in all Member States. However, the introduction of any distance-based road charging measure will inevitably be more costly. Road charging should not result in penalising of the road. It should respect the level playing field between different modes and not disturb the market conditions.

Read more

10 Oct.2016

Circular Economy package - Joint statement by CEPI, EuRIC and FEAD

Leading federations representing the paper value chain call for the co-legislators to support the further increase of paper recycling and safeguard the “quantity” criterion in the definition of municipal waste.

The European Commission proposes to define municipal waste as mixed waste and separately collected waste from households and “mixed waste and separately collected waste from other sources that is comparable to household waste in nature, composition and quantity” .

A lot of the debate has focused on the quantity criterion. We believe that this is the only objective and measurable criterion. The quantity criterion is needed to clearly distinguish between municipal waste on one hand, and commercial and industrial waste on the other.

While paper from commercial and industrial sources is already collected and recycled at high levels, an untapped potential exists for household paper collection and similar sources, for which the waste directive is setting targets. If the quantity criterion is removed, the target for municipal solid waste will unduly include commercial and industrial waste and affect the accuracy of statistical data.

Moreover, the collection of commercial and industrial waste should not be financed and cross-subsidised by public funds, ultimately resulting in additional costs for taxpayers. In the absence of the quantity criterion there is a genuine risk that the scope of municipal waste is widened and therefore the focus is diverted from areas where the need to increase collection is the most acute. In order to ensure that all streams remain open to competition, instrumental to preserving cost-efficient and innovative waste markets, we support two key actions:

1. Maintaining the quantity criterion in the definition of municipal waste;

2. Clearly stipulate into the definition of municipal waste that it is neutral with regard to the public and private status “The definition of municipal waste (…) is neutral with regard to the public or private status of the operator managing waste and to the ownership of the waste”.

CEPI – The Confederation of European Paper Industries

The Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) is a Brussels-based non-profit organisation regrouping the European pulp and paper industry and championing the industry’s achievements and the benefits of its products. Through its 18 member countries (17 European Union members plus Norway) CEPI represents some 505 pulp, paper and board producing companies across Europe, ranging from small and medium sized companies to multi-nationals, and 920 paper mills. Together they represent 23% of world production.

EuRIC – The European Recycling Industries’ Confederation

EuRic is the umbrella organisation for recycling industries in Europe. Through its Member Federations from 19 EU and EFTA countries, EuRIC represents today across Europe over:

  • 5,500 companies generating an aggregated annual turnover of about 95 billion €, including large companies and SMEs, involved in the recycling and trade of various resource streams;
  • 300,000 local jobs which cannot be outsourced to third EU countries;
  • An average of 150 million tons of waste recycled per year (paper, metals and beyond);
  • Recyclers play a key role in a circular economy. By turning wastes into resources, recycling is the link which reintroduces recycled materials into the value chains again and again.

FEAD – The European Federation of Waste Management and Environmental Services

FEAD is the European federation representing the European waste management industry. FEAD’s members are national waste management associations covering 18 Member States, Norway and Serbia. They have an approximate 60% share in the household waste market and handle more than 75% of industrial and commercial waste in Europe. Their combined annual turnover is approximately € 75 billion. FEAD represents about 3,000 companies with activities in all forms of waste management. These companies employ over 320,000 people who operate around 2,400 recycling and sorting centres, 1,100 composting sites, 260 waste-to-energy plants and 900 controlled landfills. They play an important role in the determination of the best environmental option for waste management problems.

 

Save

Save

Read more

19 Sep.2016

Response to Commission public consultation on reduced VAT rate for e-books and periodicals

Short summary: The proposal to reduce the VAT rate for e-books will not necessarily reduce the current price of e-books, as publishers may not pass this reduction to the end consumer. On the other hand, if the VAT increases for print products, this will inevitably reduce print book sales, as consumers will need to pay more. If the proposal leads to replacing printed books with e-books, we would find it unfair and not aligned with the general interest. These concerns should be addressed by maintaining the current reduced VAT rates for paper books, newspapers and periodicals and ensuring an equal and neutral treatment for both technologies. In addition, the Commission should encourage Member States to make full use of the possibility to reduce the VAT rate they apply to both printed products and e-books.

Read more

16 Sep.2016

Response to public consultation on access to international road haulage

Short summary: We support a completely free market for transport services in the European Union that can improve industry’s competitiveness. Liability of shippers should be proportionate. Simple cabotage rules allowing the development of today’s complex and international supply chains should be promoted throughout the EU.

Read more