New energy statistics 2022 to support the EU Green Deal

On January 28, 2022, the European Commission has adopted the most encompassing amendment of the energy statistics regulation ever conducted. The aim is to support even further the European Green Deal. This amendment, which will enter into force in February, will provide statistics to monitor a number of policy initiatives to decarbonise the European economy, including the Energy Union and the Fit for 55 package, as well as the Hydrogen Strategy and the Initiative on Batteries. The new statistics will be first available for the year 2022.

Welcoming the adoption today, Commissioner for Economy, Paolo Gentiloni, said: “Today’s amendment to the energy statistics regulation marks a milestone on the path to a credible and evidence-based transition towards a climate-neutral economy. With this legal act, we set the pace for energy statistics worldwide, stay ahead of policy developments and already incorporate data needs from the Fit for 55 package and other important policy initiatives, in line with the Commission’s priorities.”

With this amendment, Eurostat will publish new and more detailed high-quality data on:

New energy carriers, such as hydrogen, which will play a key role in sectors that are difficult to decarbonise (such as maritime and air transport). These new statistics will differentiate green hydrogen (produced from renewable energy) from hydrogen produced from oil or gas, and will include data to monitor how hydrogen is used in our economy. This information will become essential to monitor the developments associated with the EU Hydrogen Strategy.

Decentralised production of electricity, to monitor small producers such as households/firms installing their own solar PV panels on their roofs or agriculture/forestry companies producing their own electricity from biomass or biogas. Decentralised electricity production is becoming increasingly important, as the Renewable Energy Directive (EU) 2018/2001 encourages small consumers to play an active role in the energy market by becoming producers themselves. In addition, the Governance of the Energy Union and Climate Change (EU) 2018/1999) includes reporting obligations on renewable energy produced in buildings.

Large-scale batteries, which will become essential to store electricity and stabilise future smart-grids with a high penetration of renewables (as wind or solar production is variable and its output cannot be fine-tuned to meet demand). These data will support the EU Initiative on Batteries.

Additional renewable fuels – for example, detailed characteristics of heat pumps and closer monitoring of solar photovoltaic (PV) production, identifying rooftop PV systems, classifying production according to the size of PV system installations and collecting data on off-grid PV systems – to further help in monitoring some of the commitments included in the Renewable Energy Directive (EU) 2018/2001 and the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EU) 2018/844. The Resilience and Recovery Plans agreed upon under the Resilience and Recovery Facility put sizeable funding into energy efficiency and renewable energy in buildings.

Newly installed and decommissioned electrical capacities to monitor the transformation of the EU power production sector, as carbon-intensive power plants (e.g. coal) are being closed down and replaced with renewable power plants (such as solar PV systems or wind). This transformation is key to achieving the commitments of the Fit for 55 package.

The non-energy use of renewables to replace carbon-intensive materials with new and sustainable bio-based products, such as bio-chemicals, bio-lubricants for the automotive industry or bio-asphalt for our roads. Bio-lubricant is made up of at least 25 % bio-based carbon content, and is used as a hydraulic fluid and tractor transmission oil, industrial and marine gear oil, for bicycle chains, etc. In bio-asphalt, the fossil component of asphalt, bitumen is replaced by lignin, an important component of plants and trees. As a result, road construction becomes greener, biogenic carbon can be stored in roads for a long time, and there is less dependency on petroleum. The bio-asphalt test road in the Netherlands constructed in 2020 is living up to expectations.

Breakdown of final energy consumption (supporting the Energy Efficiency Directive (EU) 2018/2002) in:

the services sector, providing details on the energy consumption in sectors such as education, wholesale and retail trade, accommodation, food services, hospital activities and many others.

for transport activities in rail (identifying metro and tram, high-speed and conventional rail, freight transport and passenger transport) and in road (heavy-duty vehicles, collective transport, and car and vans).

The energy consumption in data centres, which is increasing sharply and is essential to monitor in order to understand the environmental impact of the digital economy. Data centres are one of the core pieces of the digital strategy of Europe, as they deliver the basic infrastructure needed to support the digital transition.

Specific final energy consumption in agriculture and in forestry, essential to further support monitoring the Common Agriculture Policy.

Specific data on grid losses during transmission and distribution of gas and electricity, a first step to improving grid efficiency, in line with the Energy Efficiency Directive (EU) 2018/2002.

Annual data will become available one month earlier (in October of the following year, instead of November), further supporting the reporting process for the State of the Energy Union.

Estimated energy balances will be published 6 months after the year-end based on official data from Member States, to support the analysis of the first trends of the EU energy market.

After intensive negotiations with Member States to ensure that data needs arising from the Fit for 55 package and other policy initiatives in the energy area were swiftly incorporated, the proposal was endorsed by the European Statistical System Committee with a great majority of Member States in favour (representing 95.52% of the EU population). In accordance with the regulatory procedure with scrutiny followed for this amendment, it was submitted for a 3-month scrutiny to the European Parliament and the Council. Both co-legislators approved without comments, paving the way for today’s Commission adoption.

Next steps
Following today’s formal adoption of the Regulation by the European Commission, it will be published in the Official Journal on 31 January. The Regulation will apply upon entry into force, 20 days after its publication.
The first reference year for this data is 2022. This means that EU Member States are already starting to collect the data in line with this amendment.

For more information:

Eurostat overview on energy statistics

Eurostat database on energy statistics

Eurostat guided tour of energy statistics

Eurostat energy data visualisation tools