Prioritising the use of high-efficiency cogeneration by industrial operators to reach 2030 climate goals Joint statement
The Fit for 55 package must safeguard industrial users’ incentives to operate on-site high-efficiency cogeneration (CHP). The signatories call on the European Parliament and Member States to support the contribution of high-efficiency CHP to the EU’s climate goals. By prioritising high-efficiency on-site cogeneration over less efficient power-only and heat-only generation, even greater carbon emission reductions and further energy efficiency gains can be achieved as clean energy sources become widely available at a competitive price.
Up to 70% of industrial energy demand consists of medium and high temperature process heat, most of which cannot be electrified either due to cost or technical constraints. Many industries use CHP to reduce energy consumption and emissions at lowest cost, considering their combined heat and power needs, as well as the availability and affordability of on-site and grid energy sources. Cogeneration is a best available solution for key manufacturing applications such as melting, drying, sterilising, cooking, process heat, or managing industrial gases.
Today, 60 GWe of high-efficiency cogeneration is installed on-site across key industries1. Industrial auto-producers cogenerate 192.5 TWh of electricity, equivalent to the total electricity produced in the Netherlands and Belgium combined2. Industrial CHP saves around 20 Mtoe of energy across Europe, which represents 5% of the 2020 energy efficiency target. This helps reduce up to 40 million tonnes CO2 yearly Europe-wide, which is equivalent to the emissions of 30 million petrol cars.
The signatories fully support the new 2030 climate targets and the objective to reach climate neutrality by 2050. For the European Union and its Member States to stay competitive in the global market and to cost-effectively meet the EU’s more ambitious decarbonisation objectives, the essential European industries require secure access to clean and affordable heat and power. Therefore, the use of CHP by industrial operators should be encouraged. Cogeneration makes an important contribution to climate, environmental and resource protection.
Cogeneration is an extremely valuable future-proof energy efficiency solution in and of itself with a key role to play on the path to carbon neutrality3. Its contributions to the overall EU energy system and to the industrial ecosystems include energy security (i.e., on-site own production and consumption of energy), energy system integration (i.e., demand-side flexibility), circular use of energy within system boundaries, and as an alternative to carbon intensive energy.