European Energy Network: Towards an integrated energy approach?


The European Energy Network (or: EnR) held its annual meeting in Zurich on 22 and 23 February. The EnR is a voluntary network currently consisting of 24 European energy agencies, and SwissEnergy part of the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE). This year, the EnR discussed putting greater emphasis on an ‘integrated energy approach’. Different energy sources, as well as different producers and consumers of electricity, are becoming increasingly interconnected. Decisions in one field are increasingly linked to other fields, e.g. renewable energy production in a private house may lead the owner to opt for an electric car, but may also have effects on the grid as a whole. In the coming years, the EnR, in particular its working groups, is going to address such questions with a higher priority.

One of the main pillars of the EnR is its working groups. They provide participants with the opportunity to deepen their expertise, but also help to create contacts needed to respond to calls concerning international projects. A number of working groups presented topics and projects currently under way. For labelling and eco-design, different projects involving members of the EnR are looking at things such as building capacity for buyers of commercial refrigeration, or best practices in product testing. Another important project, ‘Odyssee-Mure’, follows energy efficiency trends and measures in Europe and provides detailed data on energy consumption, activities and their impact.

Holding the EnR meeting in Zurich provided an opportunity to highlight the work of various Swiss actors in the field of energy efficiency and renewable energy. The regular meeting took place in the Umwelt Arena in Spreitenbach. The Umwelt Arena serves as a platform for exhibitions and events and is a role model for environmental and energy standards. It therefore has a lot in common with other EnR members, which provide information and education platforms to promote a sounder use of energy and resources. In addition, presentations covered further projects and services: Louise de la Guéronnière of Losinger Marazzi presented 2000-Watt areas in Switzerland, and Alexander Rothlin explained how the Energy Efficiency Fund of SUSI partners’ functions. The SFOE also gave an overview of its current energy policy strategy.

Finally, the EnR confirmed ANRE of Romania in the presidency for 2017/18. Congratulations to our colleagues from Romania, we are looking forward to continuing the fruitful collaboration with our partners from all over Europe!

Kurt Bisang, Head, Appliances and Competitive Tenders, SFOE