IEA World Energy Outlook 2012 - Unlocking the potential of Energy Efficiency

The Brussels launch of the International Energy Agency's World Energy Outlook 2012: "Unlocking the potential of energy efficiency" took place on 20 November 2012 in Brussels.

The Coalition for Energy Savings hosted on 20 November the Brussels launch of the World Energy Outlook 2012. During the event, a high-level panel discussed the Outlook’s conclusions and their implications for Europe’s energy efficiency policies.  

See: Full program, IEA's presentation, List of participants

Additional support to this event has been provided by: Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE), ceced, Cogen Europe, eceee, European Climate Foundation, Energy Cities, Eurima, EuroACE, Friends of the Earth Europe, Glass for Europe, Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP), WWF EPO.

The panel discussion: Wendel Trio (CAN Europe), Philippe Delorme (Schneider Electric), Philip Lowe (DG Energy), Evelyne Huytebroeck (Minister, Brussels Region), Hans Jorgen Koch (Deputy State Secretary for Energy, Denmark) and Anders Wijkman (Club of Rome).

Stefan Scheuer

Stefan Scheuer, Secretary General of the Coalition for Energy Savings, welcomed the energy efficiency focus of the IEA's WEO as an endorsement of the work of the Coalition for Energy Savings to drive the EU’s leadership. He reminded the audience that the energy supply outlook received most of the attention so far and invited speakers and participants to use the event as an opportunity to increase awareness for the energy efficiency messages.

Fatih Birol

In a global context of shifting production power, growing demand and prices and social and environmental challenges, Fatih Birol, the IEA’s chief economist, presented the unexploited energy efficiency potential as a chance for Europe to start its own energy revolution. He underlined the role of public policies to set minimum efficiency requirements, put in place the adequate governance, reach out to energy consumers and ensure the affordability of measures. These conditions would help to realise the economic potentials described in the IEA’s Efficient World Scenario and keeping open the window of opportunity to prevent catastrophic climate change for some more years.

Philip Lowe and Fatih Birol

Philip Lowe, Director General for Energy in the European Commission, recognised that the EU has been too timid on energy efficiency and should be doubling its effort.

Hans Jorgen Koch and Stefan Scheuer

Hans Jørgen Koch, Deputy State Secretary for Energy in Denmark, in his opening speech picked bad and good news of this year’s WEO, including the increasing use of dangerous energy resources and the potential of energy efficiency for employment. He wants energy efficiency instruments to be “long, loud and legal” in EU’s climate and energy policy beyond 2020.

Wendel Trio and Philippe Delorme

Philippe Delorme, Executive Vice-President of Schneider Electric, highlighted that in times of crisis energy efficiency is increasingly of a business case and called for increasing transparency of the energy consumption of buildings.

Evelyne Huytebroeck and Wendel Trio

Evelyne Huytebroeck, Energy Minister of the Brussels Region, underlined the responsibility of local governments, and the need to make cities more resilient, including to social challenges.

Wendel Trio, Director of Climate Action Network Europe, reminded the panellists that a realistic estimate is no longer a 2°C but rather a 4°C to 6°C global temperature increase, which would be devastating. He called on EU policy-makers to seize the next opportunities for energy savings: 2014 review of the Energy Efficiency Directive and the setting of an energy savings target for 2030.

Anders Wijkman

Anders Wijkman, Co-president of Club of Rome and the panel’s moderator, congratulated the IEA for the energy efficiency focus and suggested continuation. In concluding he highlighted the importance of developing the right business models for efficiency.

From the audience

Thomas Nowak (European Heat Pump Association)

Stephan Singer (WWF International)

Wolfgang Eichhammer (Fraunhofer ISI)



Wolfgang Eichhammer, Fraunhofer ISI, asked whether the IEA’s estimates are conservative in nature. He notes that they would not reach 20% energy savings in 2020 in Europe or elsewhere. Especially in regions with currently low energy efficiency, economic potentials should be even higher.