Europe’s energy sector spans numerous, often competing interests spanning renewables, oil, gas and nuclear though to electricity distribution. The coal lobby used to be a Brussels power player. No more. At the last count there are over 50 trade associations focussed on energy, and three of Brussels top 10 corporate affairs spenders (ExxonMobil, Equinor and BP) are energy companies. Moreover, every sector is an energy consumer which means EU energy policy is a vitally important horizontal policy area.
People’s well-being, industrial competitiveness and the overall functioning of society are dependent on safe, secure, sustainable and affordable energy. The energy sector, covering extraction, production and distribution directly employs in the EU about 1.6 million people and generates an added €250 billion to the economy, corresponding to 4% of value added of the non-financial EU business economy.