In 2013 the amount of energy consumed across the EU fell to its lowest levels since the early 1990s, aided by energy efficiency measures, the latest figures show. However, the statistics also reveal that the EU and UK remain dependent on imported energy.
The energy consumed across the union in 2013 amounted to the equivalent of 1,666 million tonnes of oil, just below the level seen in the early 1990s. The fall is a 9.1% drop when compared to the energy consumption peak in 2006, when the EU consumed the equivalent of 1,832 million tonnes of oil.
Governments and homeowners are increasingly recognising the benefits of energy efficiency measures and this has likely contributed to the fall in energy consumption.
Across the bloc, nuclear energy accounted for the largest share of EU domestic production of energy at 29%. Encouragingly, renewables contributed almost a quarter of the energy generated in the EU, followed by solid fuels, gas and oil, which contributed 20%, 17% and 9% respectively.
Last year, the European Commission voted to cut emissions by 40% by 2030 and set a minimum EU-wide target for renewable energy of 27%.
Despite consumption falling and renewables growing, the EU is still dependent on imported energy, with 53% of consumed energy coming from outside the bloc. Of the five member states consuming the largest amounts of energy, the UK was least dependent on imports but the figure still stood at 46.4%.
Estonia and Denmark were found to be the least dependent on energy imports, whilst more than 90% of the energy consumed in Malta, Luxembourg and Cyprus was imported.
Photo: Karen Roe via Flickr