Past Event

The role of the state in providing infrastructure for decarbonisation

Bruegel Annual Meetings, Day 2 - Who should be responsible for providing crucial infrastructure for decarbonisation and how should it be managed?

Date: September 2, 2021, 10:15 am Topic: Green economy

VIDEO AND AUDIO RECORDINGS

Bruegel · The role of the state in providing infrastructure for decarbonisation

summery

by Ben McWilliams

Jean-Bernard Lévy (CEO, EDF) was asked whether the current model is enough for electricity infrastructure to arrive at net zero goals. He argued that it is not yet there. He highlighted a trade-off between two goals of preserving the efficiency of the internal market and preserving the plant. He argued that today competition rules are prioritised. Diedrik Samson (Timmermans Cabinet, European Commission) later pushed back against this claim: arguing that the two can exist alongside one another. And Mr Lévy later commented that there is the need for the development of a clear set of standards to allow for more flexible production of electricity.

Laurence Tubiana (Director, European Climate Foundation) was asked whether responsibilities should lie with markets or the state in building infrastructure. She highlighted that there are a number of trade-offs, and ultimately it must be some combination of the two. She highlighted a second important point: the need for involvement of local citizens in infrastructure problems. This is particularly important given the likelihood of short-term increases in energy prices. Citizens must be kept on board to prevent a backlash against decarbonisation.

Diederik Samsom (Timmermans Cabinet, European Commission) spoke of the natural division of tasks between markets and governments. He argued that capacity (pipelines, transmission network) should be covered by governments whilst increasing intelligence (e.g., smart meters, digitalisation) should be provided by the market. For this to happen, he says the correct market signals are in place for flexible producers and consumers (prosumers) to come onto markets. A theme of his intervention was the need for more risk taking and acceptance of failure.

Simone Tagliapietra (Senior Fellow, Bruegel) wanted to place the conversation in context. He highlighted the scale of the challenge: today, 2.5% of global GDP is invested in energy. These investments must a) be decarbonised, and b) increase to around 4.5% according to most conventional modelling studies produced today with an outlook of net zero GHG emissions by 2050. On the question of state vs markets, he commented that governments must provide the correct framework conditions whilst most investments must come from the private sector. There does exist a role for more explicit government intervention in enabling investments: those are investments which facilitate further investments, e.g., the reinforcements of electricity grids to allow private sector investments into further renewable capacities.

In a second round of interventions, Diedrik Samsom was clear to highlight that it is society and not the Commission who drives the discussion. The Commission only reflects society. To this end, he was keen to emphasise that the defining feature of the Fitfor55 legislation will not be electric vehicles, hydrogen or another new technology but rather solidarity. To this end, the Just Transition funding will be essential for maintaining support across the community.
Georg Zachmann (Senior Fellow, Bruegel) closed the discussion with the thought that the future of climate policy might be one intertwined with all other areas of discussion. A future in which all policy areas are increasingly infected by discussion of decarbonisation.

Schedule

Sep 02, 2021

10:15-11:15

Conversation

Chair: Georg Zachmann, Senior Fellow

Jean-Bernard Lévy, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, EDF Group

Diederik Samsom, Head of Cabinet, EVP Frans Timmermans, European Commission

Simone Tagliapietra, Senior Fellow

Laurence Tubiana, Chief Executive Officer, European Climate Foundation

Speakers

Jean-Bernard Lévy

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, EDF Group

Diederik Samsom

Head of Cabinet, EVP Frans Timmermans, European Commission

Simone Tagliapietra

Senior Fellow

Laurence Tubiana

Chief Executive Officer, European Climate Foundation

Georg Zachmann

Senior Fellow

Location & Contact

Palais des Academies, Rue Ducale 1

Katja Knezevic

[email protected]

Read about event
 

Past Event

Past Event

[Cancelled] Shifting taxes in order to achieve green goals

[This event is cancelled until further notice] How could shifting the tax burden from labour to pollution and resources help the EU reach its climate goals?

Speakers: Niclas Poitiers and Femke Groothuis Topic: Green economy, Macroeconomic policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: May 12, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

What is in store for Euro area economies?

ECB Executive Board Member Philip Lane discusses the outlook for Euro area economies.

Speakers: Maria Demertzis and Philip Lane Topic: European governance Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: May 5, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

COVID-19 and the shift to working from home: differences between the US and the EU

What changes has working from home brought on for workers and societies, and how can policy catch up?

Speakers: Jose Maria Barrero, Mamta Kapur, J. Scott Marcus and Laura Nurski Topic: Inclusive growth Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: April 28, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

From viruses to wars: recent disruptions to global trade and value chains

How have events in recent years impacted global trade and value chains and how can we strengthen these against future disruptions?

Speakers: Dalia Marin, Adil Mohommad and André Sapir Topic: Global economy and trade Date: April 27, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

War in Ukraine: What is the effect on Central and Eastern Europe?

How is the war in Ukraine affecting the countries in the central and eastern parts of Europe, the countries that are closest to the ongoing conflict?

Speakers: Beata Javorcik and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European governance Date: April 26, 2022
Read about event
 

Past Event

Past Event

War in Ukraine: How to make Europe independent from Russian fossil fuels?

In this episode of the Sound of Economics live we discuss whether REPowerEU can make sure that Europe has affordable and secure energy supplies in both the near and long term.

Speakers: Diederik Samsom, Georg Zachmann and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: European governance, Green economy Date: March 31, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Tackling future risks to banks

How to address vulnerabilities in banks in the coming years?

Speakers: Maria Demertzis and Elizabeth McCaul Topic: Banking and capital markets Date: March 29, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Macroeconomic and financial stability in changing times: conversation with Andrew Bailey

Guntram Wolff will be joined in conversation by Andrew Bailey, Governor of the Bank of England.

Speakers: Andrew Bailey and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Macroeconomic policy Date: March 28, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Who will enforce the Digital Markets Act?

While the Digital Markets Act entered its first trilogue, what will be the enforcement role of the Commission and the Member States?

Speakers: Christophe Carugati, Cani Fernández, Assimakis Komninos and Georgios Petropoulos Topic: Digital economy and innovation Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: March 22, 2022
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

External Publication

Dans l’urgence climatique

Book published by Gallimard and overseen by Groupe d’études géopolitiques (GEG)

By: Simone Tagliapietra Topic: Green economy Date: March 22, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

Decarbonising Germany: conversation with Patrick Graichen

A special off-the-record conversation with Patrick Graichen.

Speakers: Patrick Graichen and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Green economy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: March 10, 2022
Read about event More on this topic
 

Past Event

Past Event

War in Ukraine: reflections on the economic consequences for Russia

Sergei Guriev joins us to discuss how the Russian invasion of Ukraine will affect the economies of Russia and the world?

Speakers: Sergei Guriev, Maria Demertzis and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Global economy and trade Date: March 10, 2022
Load more posts