Cefic, the European Chemical Industry Council, has welcomed the commitment to ensuring a stable growth path for the European chemical industry, following the formal adoption by the European Council to include a coordinated and strategic industry policy in its 2018 work programme to strengthen Europe.
Member States have called on the Commission to provide a holistic EU industrial policy strategy for the future, in time for the European Council meeting in Spring 2018.
Cefic believes that a holistic industry strategy can support a strong future Europe by including support for energy-intensive industry to ease the transition to a low-carbon Europe, greater support for applied research and development, and strict enforcement of REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and restriction of Chemicals) at the EU border regarding imported articles for imported goods.
Marco Mensink, Cefic Director General, said: “Today European companies got a strong signal of support from Member States. The EU chemical industry is ready to work with the Commission on developing and implementing this industry strategy and to help Europe to regain a best-in-class investment climate. In this way Europe can regain its position as a global force, making a success of the transition to a low-carbon future and for the future of Europe itself.”
Earlier this year, 128 industry associations campaigned to make industry the focus of a dedicated Commission plan.
The single market’s industrial base is increasingly confronted by an ageing infrastructure, demographically declining markets, and fierce competition from other world regions, particularly the US, China, and the Middle East.
With unanimous support from the EU-28 and the Maltese presidency, the Commission now has the momentum needed to take a next important step.
By Tom Walker
France has launched an offshore green hydrogen production platform at the country’s Port of Saint-Nazaire this week, along with its first offshore wind farm. The hydrogen plant, which its operators say is the world’s first facility of its type, coincides with the launch of another “first of its kind” facility in Sweden dedicated to storing hydrogen in an underground lined rock cavern (LRC).
The project sets up the Hydrogen Valley in Rome, the first industrial-scale technological hub for the development of the national supply chain for the production, transport, storage and use of hydrogen for the decarbonization of industrial processes and for sustainable mobility.
At first glance, hydrogen seems to be the perfect solution to our energy needs. It doesn’t produce any carbon dioxide when used. It can store energy for long periods of time. It doesn’t leave behind hazardous waste materials, like nuclear does. And it doesn’t require large swathes of land to be flooded, like hydroelectricity. Seems too good to be true. So…what’s the catch?