An agreement has been reached on the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), part of the European Union's effort to reach a target of 20 per cent of primary energy savings by 2020.
However, the European Heat Pump Association (EHPA) is unimpressed. It said: 'Although a deal on the Directive is positive, its ambition and proposed measures are underwhelming.'
And, it added: 'As a representative of the European heat pump industry, we are, both from a growth and a climate protection perspective, convinced that improving energy efficiency is necessary for a sustainable, competitive Europe of the future.
'The current text, cautious as it is, will not free all the EU's energy efficiency potential,
and this is a real shame. Not least because ambition levels could easily have been raised without a negative impact on budgets by including reference to all efficient technologies when it comes to heating and cooling.
Thomas Nowak, Secretary General of EHPA, added: 'A broader and more technology-neutral approach would have made it easier for Member States to reach more ambitious targets in a way that is appropriate to their particular national and geographical circumstances.'
Rather than focusing primarily on large-scale heating and cooling applications, EHPA would have liked to see reference to small-scale solutions such as heat pumps too.
It said: 'This would have given Member States the chance to take up the technology that would best fit their particular needs, based on a cost-benefit analysis, rather than being restricted to using certain, prescribed technologies.'
It concluded: 'No-one can have missed the fact that Europe is going through a serious crisis at the moment. In such situations, you need all men on deck, not just a selected few. As EHPA, we will be working to ensure that the potential of the heat pump is not overlooked in any upcoming legislation on energy and environment issues.
'Europe simply cannot afford to miss out on what our technology has to
offer if it is serious about an energy efficient future.'