Trends, Investment Behaviour and Policy Design
Edited by Raymond J.G.M. Florax, Henri L.F. de Groot and Peter Mulder
Chapter 5: Monitoring Energy Use and Energy Efficiency in the Dutch Service Sector
Andrea Ramírez, Martin K. Patel and Kornelis Blok 1 INTRODUCTION Energy efficiency is considered a key policy strategy for the abatement of greenhouse gases (EC, 2005; IEA, 2006; IPCC, 2007). It is an attractive policy option for various reasons. The most important reasons are: energy efficiency would allow a (partial) decoupling of economic growth from environmental pressures, it enhances the reliability of energy supplies by reducing system loads and stresses, and it often has short pay-back periods. Additional benefits can include noise reduction, labour and time savings,1 improved process control, and water and waste minimization (Worrell et al., 2003). The potential for larger savings through energy efficiency has long been recognized. In 1993 for instance, the EC Directive 93/76/EEC had as its main objective limiting carbon dioxide emissions by improving energy efficiency. In April 2000, the European Commission presented an action plan to improve energy efficiency in the European Community (EC, 2000). In this action plan an estimated economic potential for energy efficiency improvement of more than 18 per cent was reported. In 2005, the European Commission’s Green Paper on Energy Efficiency pointed to the fact that the European Union (EU) could save at least 20 per cent of primary energy by implementing energy efficiency measures (EC, 2005). In turn, the 2006 EU Directive on the promotion of end-use efficiency and energy services stated overall national indicative energy savings targets of 9 per cent by 2016 to be reached by each member state (EC, 2006a). Furthermore, member states...
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