As informed by the EESC, the Section for Transport, Energy, Infrastructure and the Information Society (TEN) of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) has adopted Opinion on the subject "For coordinated European measures to prevent and combat energy poverty". This opinion was prepared by Pierre-Jean Coulon (Workers' Group – France) as rapporteur and Bernardo Hernández Bataller (Various Interests' Group – Spain) as corapporteur.
The opinion establishes ways forward to deal with energy affordability, in particular the following points are highlighted:
- establishing European energy poverty indicators and harmonising statistics in order to identify, prevent and tackle the problem more effectively at European level;
- setting up a European poverty observatory, whose main focus would be on energy poverty. It will help define European energy poverty indicators, identify best practices and draw up recommendations in this sphere;
- including an analysis of energy poverty in the Union in the report requested by the European Council (by the end of 2013) from the European Commission;
- considering setting up a European energy solidarity fund;
- before they are adopted, analysing the main measures of EU and Member States' energy policy in terms of the extent of their economic impact on the various categories of consumers;
- organising a European energy information campaign to be run at national and local level on combating energy poverty in order to promote, in particular, education on energy efficiency and the citizen as an active energy consumer.