Can the EU afford to leave rural areas behind in its energy transition?

Dinner debate in Strasbourg
Main speaker: 

Chaired by Jerzy Buzek MEP, President of the European Energy Forum

The efforts made by countries to give life to the 2015 Paris Agreement are expected to get concretised at the upcoming COP24 in Katowice, Poland. As much as countries need to increase their commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, others such as China, India, Brazil, Japan and the European Union are awaited to make concrete proposals.

In preparation for this key appointment, the European Commission has been working on a mid-century proposal for a strategy for the EU's long-term reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The debate on decarbonisation focuses predominantly on urban areas and the development of smart cities. Although this is important, more than 50% of European citizens today live in rural areas with increasingly poor air quality. Their specific needs should also be focused on if the EU wants to achieve its objective.

The environment matters to people. Ahead of the upcoming European elections, it is key for EU policy makers to make it a priority through propositions based on credible rural energy data to tackle energy poverty taking into account decentralised areas.

Therefore, a study on rural decarbonisation pathways was commissioned and developed by Ecuity Consulting to collate a credible data set. The study presents the specific energy challenges and decarbonisation opportunities that rural areas are facing today. The EEF dinner-debate will provide European politicians, policymakers and energy stakeholders with an opportunity to discuss them and to exchange view on how they can be best addressed from a policy perspective.


Please note that in order to attend the dinner-debate participants must have a valid access badge issued by the transparency register.

Participants not holding the aforementioned permanent accreditation will have to arrange access themselves to attend the dinner-debate. The EEF will not take any responsibilities for people having registered to the dinner-debate without being accredited.