Fit and ready for the green transition

The Council has adopted its position on the proposed regulation establishing a framework for setting ecodesign requirements for sustainable products.

The new regulation will replace the existing 2009 directive and enlarge the scope to set environmental sustainability requirements for almost all kind of goods placed on the EU market.

Ebba Busch, Swedish Minister for Energy, Business and Industry and Deputy Prime Minister, said, on behalf the EU Swedish Presidency: “The Ecodesign regulation will make sure that products sold in the EU market are fit and ready for the green transition.”

Yet, current sectoral developments (Revision of Commission regulations (EU) 813/2013 and (EU) 811/2013 on respectively Ecodesign and Energy Label of central hydronic space and combination heaters) propose the phase out of ‘stand-alone’ (non-hybrid) boilers from September 2029. When Europe needs to diversify its energy use and embrace all the existing solutions, these proposals want to limit the options available.

The liquid heating fuels sector believes that low carbon and renewable liquid fuels are fit and ready for the green transition.

Heat pumps and district heating, which seem to be the preferred options for policy-makers, are excellent solutions to decarbonise the heating sector. However, today, they are expensive and not suited to every situation. Furthermore, the full electrification of buildings and transport poses complex challenges for the electricity network, generation and supply management. The cost of adapting the infrastructure and expanding the grid will not be neglectable. Other solutions exist and should be actively supported.

Consumers are keen to decarbonise, but they must be able to choose the right solution for their particular circumstances. The solution will be different depending on where they live, the type of building they live in, and what they can afford. For decades, liquid fuels have been a popular heating choice, particularly in rural areas. Renewable liquid fuels, potentially in combination with other types of energy (hybrid systems), are the most effective and affordable answer for many Europeans.

Liquid fuels can and will be fossil free. They offer a drop-in solution and can be easily deployed in existing liquid fuel heating systems, whether as blends or 100%. The conversion process is straightforward, and this ease of adoption makes them attractive to consumers. Their inherent flexibility offers an excellent alternative when other options are less suitable, enabling rapid progress towards the decarbonisation of the European heating system.

Liquid fuels are a key element of a diversified and independent energy mix, much needed in Europe. Liquid fuels do not need to be fossil!