• 3 hours Saudi Aramco CEO Affirms IPO On Track For H2 2018
  • 5 hours Canadia Ltd. Returns To Sudan For First Time Since Oil Price Crash
  • 6 hours Syrian Rebel Group Takes Over Oil Field From IS
  • 3 days PDVSA Booted From Caribbean Terminal Over Unpaid Bills
  • 3 days Russia Warns Ukraine Against Recovering Oil Off The Coast Of Crimea
  • 3 days Syrian Rebels Relinquish Control Of Major Gas Field
  • 3 days Schlumberger Warns Of Moderating Investment In North America
  • 3 days Oil Prices Set For Weekly Loss As Profit Taking Trumps Mideast Tensions
  • 3 days Energy Regulators Look To Guard Grid From Cyberattacks
  • 3 days Mexico Says OPEC Has Not Approached It For Deal Extension
  • 3 days New Video Game Targets Oil Infrastructure
  • 3 days Shell Restarts Bonny Light Exports
  • 3 days Russia’s Rosneft To Take Majority In Kurdish Oil Pipeline
  • 4 days Iraq Struggles To Replace Damaged Kirkuk Equipment As Output Falls
  • 4 days British Utility Companies Brace For Major Reforms
  • 4 days Montenegro A ‘Sweet Spot’ Of Untapped Oil, Gas In The Adriatic
  • 4 days Rosneft CEO: Rising U.S. Shale A Downside Risk To Oil Prices
  • 4 days Brazil Could Invite More Bids For Unsold Pre-Salt Oil Blocks
  • 4 days OPEC/Non-OPEC Seek Consensus On Deal Before Nov Summit
  • 4 days London Stock Exchange Boss Defends Push To Win Aramco IPO
  • 4 days Rosneft Signs $400M Deal With Kurdistan
  • 4 days Kinder Morgan Warns About Trans Mountain Delays
  • 5 days India, China, U.S., Complain Of Venezuelan Crude Oil Quality Issues
  • 5 days Kurdish Kirkuk-Ceyhan Crude Oil Flows Plunge To 225,000 Bpd
  • 5 days Russia, Saudis Team Up To Boost Fracking Tech
  • 5 days Conflicting News Spurs Doubt On Aramco IPO
  • 5 days Exxon Starts Production At New Refinery In Texas
  • 5 days Iraq Asks BP To Redevelop Kirkuk Oil Fields
  • 6 days Oil Prices Rise After U.S. API Reports Strong Crude Inventory Draw
  • 6 days Oil Gains Spur Growth In Canada’s Oil Cities
  • 6 days China To Take 5% Of Rosneft’s Output In New Deal
  • 6 days UAE Oil Giant Seeks Partnership For Possible IPO
  • 6 days Planting Trees Could Cut Emissions As Much As Quitting Oil
  • 6 days VW Fails To Secure Critical Commodity For EVs
  • 6 days Enbridge Pipeline Expansion Finally Approved
  • 6 days Iraqi Forces Seize Control Of North Oil Co Fields In Kirkuk
  • 6 days OPEC Oil Deal Compliance Falls To 86%
  • 7 days U.S. Oil Production To Increase in November As Rig Count Falls
  • 7 days Gazprom Neft Unhappy With OPEC-Russia Production Cut Deal
  • 7 days Disputed Venezuelan Vote Could Lead To More Sanctions, Clashes
Colin Chilcoat

Colin Chilcoat

Colin Chilcoat is a specialist in Eurasian energy affairs and political institutions currently living and working in Chicago. A complete collection of his work can…

More Info

EU Importing More Than 50% Of Its Energy

EU Importing More Than 50% Of Its Energy

The EU is well on its way to achieving its 2020 climate and energy goals. The targets – 20 percent cut in greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels, 20 percent of EU energy from renewables, and 20 percent improvement in energy efficiency – were enacted in 2009 and highlight the bloc’s ambitious moves to combat climate change.

Climate aside, the 2020 strategy also aims to reduce the financial and existential burdens associated with energy imports. Six years in however, the needle on energy dependence hasn’t budged.

Energy dependency reached 53.4 percent for the 28-member bloc in 2014, marking the eleventh consecutive year in which energy imports have accounted for the majority share of gross inland energy consumption. Overall dependence is down just over 1 percent since its peak in 2008, but remains above the 10-year average for the period beginning 2005. Related: Why Today’s Oil Bust Pales In Comparison To The 80’s

Broken down by fuel, EU dependence on foreign gas, petroleum products, and solid fuels has never been higher at 67.2, 87.4, and 45.6 percent respectively. Gas import requirements are up 10 percent since 2005, and solid fuel imports are some 6 percent higher in the same period; petroleum product imports too have grown more than 5 percent.

Among the EU’s five largest consumers, France (46.1 percent) and Italy (75.9 percent) recorded their lowest energy dependency rates since 1990. One year removed from their peaks, Germany (61.4 percent) and the United Kingdom (45.5 percent) also saw reduced foreign dependence in 2014, though Germany remains a key driver of gas imports on the continent. Rounding out the top five, Spain (72.9 percent) actually saw its dependency rise, both overall and across all three fuels.

Now, for exporters, the dependency rates are a bit of fool’s gold when taken alone. Combined energy consumption of the 28 member nations has fallen to its lowest level in more than 20 years, down some 13 percent since its peak in 2006. The energy splits reveal similar trends for fossil fuels: coal consumption is back on the decline after the shale gas revolution briefly arrested its descent to start the decade; petroleum consumption is far below 1990 levels and falling; and natural gas consumption has plummeted more than 23 percent since 2010. Related: Oil Price Volatility Off The Charts

Of course, while the ceiling is gradually capped, the share of what lies beneath is slowly falling. OECD Europe oil production is expected to drop roughly 1 percent per year toward 2040, with North Sea production experiencing the heaviest declines. Gas production will fall more sharply – 25 percent below 2010 levels by 2020.

Moreover, renewable generation is not being added at a pace quick enough to meaningfully offset decays in traditional production. 2015 was a good year, but renewable investments have nosedived as policy costs, low CO2 prices, and medium-term risks force financiers to pursue safer returns in the U.S., China, or India. Related: ISIS Forced To Cut Wages As Oil Revenues Tank

As such – and with steady, if underwhelming, growth – import dependency will continue to rise. Further, traditional suppliers like Russia and Norway are unlikely to be significantly displaced. Opposition is growing to Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline, but Gazprom is confident the project will proceed. In any case, Russian deliveries are likely to grow between 2 and 10 percent in the short- to medium-term.

For its part, Norway believes demand signals point to an expansion of its promising Barents Sea operations. Newer entrants will look to take advantage of the mushrooming LNG demand, which could nearly double by 2020. In particular, Australia and the U.S. appear set on capturing shares of the fresh market.

Energy dependence and energy security are not mutually exclusive. In this age of plenty, the EU has its fair share of reliable and politically reasonable options. Still, care will be necessary to ensure the bloc’s medium-term efficiency and decarbonization goals are not deferred.

By Colin Chilcoat of Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:




Back to homepage


Leave a comment

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News