16 May 2013 16:27 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--EU chemicals industry group Cefic on Thursday called for EU climate change policy to include competitively priced energy in order to promote the region’s competitiveness.
Cefic leaders said competitively priced energy will be essential if the EU is to deliver jobs and growth alongside progress in combating climate change.
Speaking during the European Business Summit in Brussels, Cefic leaders urged policymakers to balance climate policy objectives with the need to close the energy cost gap between Europe and major competing markets, such Asia, the Middle East and the US.
Cefic board member Tom Crotty, a summit panellist and also CEO of Switzerland-based INEOS Olefins & Polymers, said: “A policy shift towards reducing EU energy and policy costs is needed to ensure industry stays globally competitive.
“It’s a question of whether policy will continue to be based on pushing up energy prices, or seek instead to make low-carbon energy cheaper and bring focus back to investment that ensures breakthrough products can still be made here at home,” he added.
Cefic, with support from energy consultancy Ecofys, recently published a roadmap study entitled “European chemistry for growth: unlocking a competitive, low carbon and energy efficient future,” which concludes that innovation and investment will be necessary to improve energy efficiency and cut greenhouse gas emissions.
“The roadmap explores the chemical industry’s role based on future scenarios during the 2020-2050 timeframe. The paper shows how outcomes could vary according to differing policy targets in Europe and the rest of the world, as well as variations in energy and feedstock costs and the speed of innovation,” Cefic said.
Crotty said: “While policymakers pursue a global climate policy agreement they must keep in mind the reality that the European chemical industry faces an uneven playing field in terms of the global carbon cost.”
You can view the roadmap at the Cefic website here.
Earlier on Thursday, Cefic announced in its Chemicals Trends Report that EU chemicals production fell 1.7% year on year in the first two months of 2013. The EU chemicals production level for January and February in 2013 remains 8.1% below the peak in 2007.
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