Fraunhofer-Institut für
System- und Innovationsforschung ISI

Energy Savings 2020: How to triple the impact of energy saving policies in Europe

Europe’s recovery from a financial and economic crisis represents an opportunity to kick-start an economic transformation towards a prosperous low-carbon future. As we search for a return to economic stability, increased competitiveness and sustainable long-term growth, there is compelling evidence that improving energy efficiency to achieve the European Union’s (EU) 20% energy savings target by 2020 is a smart strategic option. Also the recently published Energy Concept of the German government has shown that the largest contributions to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and of energy consumption will come from energy efficiency. Energy efficiency is not only the lowest-cost means of reducing carbon emissions in the economy, but also:

  • Is widely distributed, with savings opportunities in every Member State and economic sector

  • Directly reduces energy costs to households and businesses across the economy, thereby reducing energy poverty and strengthening global competitiveness of EU businesses

  • Has the potential to create wide-scale business opportunities and significant numbers of new, local and permanent jobs

  • Improves power system reliability and security of supply while reducing energy import dependency

  • Avoids the need to build a large fraction of otherwise-required power generation, transmission and delivery infrastructure; and

  • Contributes to the achievement of EU’s renewable en­ergy and greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets

The evidence today, reinforced by the Energy Savings 2020 study by Ecofys and Fraunhofer ISI, points to a massive potential and urgency for improving energy efficiency in Europe.

Ecofys and Fraunhofer ISI (2010): Energy Savings 2020: How to triple the impact of energy saving policies in Europe, commissioned by the European Climate Foundation and the Regulatory Assistance Project, 15 September 2010. Full report and complementary documents available on

© 2018 Fraunhofer ISI