• Final energy consumption is growing again since 2014 with the economic growth rebound (+1.5%/year), recovering its 2000 level. It has been increasing until 2007 (+0.5%/year over 2000-2007) and decreasing between 2007 and 2014 because of the economic crisis (-1.2%/year). 
  • The share of transport in final energy consumption has increased (from 30% in 2000 to 33% in 2017), as for services (from 12 to 14%). The share of industry has decreased by almost 4 percentage points, from 29% in 2000 to 25% in 2017. Households’ share is rather stable (26%). 

Figure 1: Final energy consumption by sector (normal climate)


  • Energy efficiency of final consumers, as measured by ODEX indicator, improved by 1.2%/year between 2000 and 2017, with a net slowdown since 2010 (1.1%/year compared to 1.4%/year before 2007). 
  • Larger gains have been achieved for households (2.1%/year) with a net slow down since 2014 (1.4 %/year against 2.3%/year before). 
  • The rate of energy efficiency improvement has been divided by more than 2 in industry since the economic crisis (-0.8%/year since 2007 compared to 1.8%/year before). 
  • The transport sector had also a net slowdown in recent years (0.5%/year since 2015 against 1%/year before). 
  • There was few “measurable” progress in services before 2013.

Figure 2: Technical Energy Efficiency Index


The medium-term energy and climate strategy of the EU until 2030 is set by the "Clean Energy for all Europeans package". The package consists of eight legislative acts, which entered into force between May 2018 and May 2019:  (1) Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EU 2018/844) (2)  Renewable Energy Directive (2018/2001/EU) (3) Energy Efficiency Directive (EU 2018/844) (4) Governance of the Energy Union (Regulation EU 2018/1999) (5) Electricity Regulation (EU 2019/943) (6) Electricity Directive (EU 2019/944) (7) Risk Preparedness (Regulation EU 2019/941) (8) Acer (Regulation EU 2019/942). Since "Energy Efficiency First" is a key objective in this package, a binding target for energy efficiency of at least 32.5% by 2030 was set in 2018.  Under the Governance Regulation, the MS had to submit integrated national energy and climate plans (NECPs) by 31 December 2019. These plans outline how the country will achieve the EU energy and climate targets for 2030 and also include a view until 2050.

In the long-term, the EU published its vision for a climate-neutral Europe in November 2018. The EU long-term strategy  is implemented by the "European Green Deal", which was presented by the Commission in December 2019. As part of the Green Deal, the Commission proposed a "European Climate Law" in March 2020.  

Table 1: Sample of cross-cutting measures

MeasuresNEEAP measuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
(Amended) Energy Efficiency Directive (EED)yesThe new amending Directive on Energy Efficiency (EU 2018/844) updated the energy efficiency policy framework to 2030.The key element is the new headlline target for energy efficiency. Expected final energy consumption in 2030 (compated to a BAU-Scenario): not more than 846 Mtoe (without UK)Link
Source: MURE


  • Heating is by far the largest end-use for households (66%). 
  • The heating consumption of households per m2 has been decreasing thanks to the tightening of building codes, coupled with financial incentives to promote thermal retrofitting of existing dwellings and the adoption of more efficient heating systems. 
  • The energy consumption per dwelling decreased less than the consumption per m2 (by 1.5%/year and 1.9%/year respectively) because of an increase in the average dwelling size (+0.3%/yearsince 2000). 
  • The shares of cooking and water heating are decreasing while electrical appliances account for a higher share; the share of air conditioning (AC) is still marginal. 

Figure 3: Energy consumption of space heating per m2


Figure 4: Energy consumption per dwelling by end-use (except space heating)


  • In 2017, energy consumption of households was slightly below its 2000 level (-3.5 Mtoe or around 1%). 
  • Three main factors contributed to increase energy consumption over the period: a growing number of dwellings (+47 Mtoe), an increasing demand for comfort characterized by larger homes (+20 Mtoe) and an increasing number of appliances (+7 Mtoe). 
  • Energy savings (113 Mtoe) more than offset the effect of these factors. 

Figure 5: Main drivers of the energy consumption variation in households


  • The energy consumption per employee decreased over the period 2010-2014 (-2%/year) and has been stable since then. 
  •  It increased during the period of low economic growth (2007-2010) (+2%/year) as the consumption decrease did not follow the activity slowdown. 
  • The electricity consumption per employee increased by 1.5%/year until 2010 and has been decreasing afterwards (-1%/year). 

Figure 6: Energy and electricity consumption per employee (normal climate)


The legislative framework for the European building sector is set by two key regulations. The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) was first introduced in 2010 (2010/31/EU), the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) in 2012 (2012/27/EU). Both Directives aim at policies to reach an energy-efficient and debarbonised building stock by 2050 and both were amended in 2018 (amended EPBD: 2018/844/EU; amended EED: 2018/1999/EU).

Electrical appliances are regulated by energy labelling and ecodesign requirements. A new Energy Labelling regulation (2017/1369/EU)  was adopted in July 2017, replacing the former Labelling Directive (2010/30/EU). It includes several new issues, such as a reintroduction of the original A-G scale for labelling and a new database (EPREL). The labelling framework covers 15 product groups, most of them related to the household sector. The ecodesign requirements for individual product groups are created under the EU's Ecodesign Directive (2009/125/EC) in a structured process coordinated by the European Commission. The EU legislation on ecodesign is applicable on 31 product groups, of which the majority is related to buildings. On 1 October 2019, the Commission adopted 10 Ecodesign Implementing Regulations of which eight revised  existing requirements (refrigerators, washing machines, diswashers, electronic displays, light sources, external power suppliers, electric motors, power transformers) and two new regulations (refrigerators with direct saled function, welding equipment).  

Table 2: Sample of policies and measures implemented in the building sector

MeasuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
Amended Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) With the amendment of the former EPBD from 2010 in 2018, some new measures were introduced to modernise the EU's building sector and to increase the renovation rates. These measures include long-term renovation strategies to be delivered by the MS, Minimum energy Performance Standard for new and existing buildings, energy performance standards for buildings as well as the nearly zero-energy buildings (NEZEB) standard for new buildings from 31 December 2020.Reduction of annual final energy use in 2030: 28 Mtoe Reduction of CO2 emissions: 38 Mt. Result of Impact assessment (preferred Option)Link
Source: MURE


  • The distribution of the energy consumption of transport by mode has remained almost stable since 2000, road representing around 82% of transport consumption. 
  • Cars account for 46% of the sector's consumption and road freight transport (trucks and light-duty vehicles) for 32% in 2017. 

Figure 7: Split of the transport energy consumption by mode


  • The share of public transport in passenger traffic remained stable (around 18%). 
  • This stability is the result of opposite trends in EU Member States with a decrease in the majority of countries (60%) but an increase in some countries, among which are some of the largest countries.

Figure 8: Share of transport modes in passenger traffic


  • The share of rail and water in the traffic of goods (23% in 2017) has decreased at EU level (-3.5 points), despite the policies implemented to promote rail or water transport). 

Figure 9: Share of modes in freight traffic


  • The consumption of transport increased by 34 Mtoe since 2000. 
  • Change in passengers and goods traffic contributed to increase the energy consumption (by 79 Mtoe). This effect was almost counterbalanced by energy savings (i.e. change in the efficiency of cars, trucks, airplanes, etc.) which contributed to decrease the energy consumption by 57 Mtoe. 
  • Other effects (behavioural effects and "negative savings" in freight transport due to low capacity utilization during the recession) slightly increased the energy consumption (by 8 Mtoe).

Figure 10: Main drivers of the energy consumption variation in transport (2000-2014)


The key Directives to increase energy efficiency and reducing CO2 emissions in road transport are mandatory emission reduction targets for new vehicles. For new cars, such targets have been set since 2009 (Regulation 443/2009/EC), and for vans since 2011 (Regulation 510/2011/EU) . From 1 January 2020, new CO2 Emission permormance standards are in place for new cars and vans for 2025 and 2030, The new Regulation (EU) 2019/631 replaces the former regulations for cars and vans. For the first time, CO2 emission standards have also been adopted for heavy-duty vehicles in 2019 (Regulation 2019/1242/EU), setting targets for new lorries for 2025 and 2030. Considering the CO2 emissions of aviation, they have been included in the EU emissions trading system since 2012.

Table 3: Policies and measures into force in the transport sector

MeasuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
CO2 emission performance standards for new passenger cars and for new light commercial vehicles (Regulation (EU) 2019/631)The Regulation sets new EU fleet-wide CO2 emission targets for the years 2025 and 2030 for newly registered passenger cars and vans. The targets are defined as a percentage reductions: for cars 15% reduction from 2025 and 37.5% from 2030; for vans 15% reduction from 2025 and 31% from 2030.GHG emission reduction in 2030 (comp. to 2005): 23%Link
CO2 emission performance standards for new heavy-duty vehicles (Regulation (EU) 2019/1242)The regulstion sets CO2 emission standards for heavy-duty vehicles by Setting targets for reducing the average emissions from new lorries for 2025 and 2030. The Regulation also includes a mechanism to incentivise the uptake of zero- and low-emission vehicles, in a technology-neutral way.Annual CO2 reduction by 2030: 54 Mt.Link
Source: MURE


  • Since 2000, energy consumption has decreased in all industrial branches. 
  • Chemical and steel industries are the main energy consuming branches, each corresponding to 17% of total industrial consumption in 2017; while the share of chemicals is increasing (+0.8 percentage points since 2000), the share of steel is declining (-2.1 percentage points).

Figure 11: Final energy consumption by branch

Source: ODYSSEE, steel including blast furnaces

  • After a sharp decrease over 2000-2007 (-2.1%/year), the specific consumption of steel has been stable since 2007. 
  • There is a slight decrease of the specific consumption for pulp and paper (-0.3%/year from 2000 to 2017). 
  • There was a sharp decrease of the specific consumption of cement between 2000 and 2006 (-2.7%/year); since then no energy efficiency progress has been observed. 

Figure 12: Unit consumption of energy‐intensive products (toe/t)


  • The industry energy consumption decreased by around 50 Mtoe between 2000 and 2017. 
  • This is mainly due to energy savings (66 Mtoe) and to a lesser extent to a structural effect (14 Mtoe), i.e. the fact that less intensive branches increased their contribution in industrial value added. 
  • Change in industrial activity (measured with the production index) had a relatively limited effect (23 Mtoe), due to the recession over 2007-2013.

Figure 13: Main drivers of the energy consumption variation in industry


The key regulation for energy-intensive industries is the EU emissions trading system (EU ETS). The third phase of the EU ETS covers the period 2013-2020. The legislative framework of the EU ETS for its next trading period (phase 4 from 2021-2030) was revised in early 2018. Industrial cross-cutting technologies (as e.g. circulators, electric motors, computers and servers, fans) are regulated by the EU's Ecodesign Directive (2009/125/EC). A key funding programme for industry is the EU Innovation Fund for demonstration of innovative low-carbon technologies.


Table 4: Policies and measures into force in industry

MeasuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
EU Emission Trading System (EU ETS)The "cap and trade" system covers CO2 emissions from power and heat generation, energy intensive industries as well as commercial aviation.Link
Source: MURE