Select Committee on European Union Fourteenth Report


Call for Evidence

Sub-Committee B of the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Union is undertaking an inquiry into the issues raised by the European Commission's Green Paper "Towards a European strategy for the security of energy supply".

Evidence is invited on what, within European Union policies, the European Union, national governments and their agencies should be doing to develop and co-ordinate policy on security of energy supplies.

In particular, the inquiry will be seeking answers to the following questions:

1) The European Commission's Green Paper in calling for a European Strategy for the security of energy supply appears to suggest that continuity of supply is in doubt because of increased reliance on imports. Do you agree? If so, what security issues do you think this raises?

2) In the US, the Administration's policy appears to be one of encouraging supply, whereas the Green Paper's focus is on restraining demand. Which, do you think, is the right approach?

3) Is there a need for a European Energy Policy? What effect would a European Energy Policy have on global markets?

4) The Green Paper emphasises producer/consumer dialogue as a means of producing energy market stability. Is this necessary? Will not producer/consumer agreements distort the global market? What effect would this have on continued access to other sources of supply?

5) What is the role that should be played by nuclear power? How should the balance be struck between the benefits of low emissions and the problems of nuclear waste disposal?

6) How can the contribution of renewables and alternative sources, such as hydrogen fuel cells, be promoted most effectively? And how important a part will they play in securing energy supplies in Europe?

7) Are energy market liberalisation, meeting climate change targets, and ensuring the security of energy supply, compatible objectives? If not, which one should take priority?

8) Is "upward harmonisation" of tax rates between Member States unavoidable, as the Green Paper suggests? Is taxation at a EU-level necessary?

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