Electrification for carbon-neutral energy
As the demand for electrification of European energy increases, the EIB is financing numerous innovation projects in electric mobility, from research and development in the car industry to battery manufacturing and the deployment of a dense network of charging stations that will encourage people to switch to electric cars.
Greater use of electricity instead of other fuels needs a huge investment in electricity transmission infrastructure. That’s because wind and solar energy tend to fluctuate—there’s no solar energy at night and the wind doesn’t always blow.
Efficient carbon-neutral energy
The European Investment Bank is supporting efforts to increase energy efficiency everywhere from social housing to hospitals, and from schools to transport. The European Local Energy Assistance (ELENA) initiative provides cities with grants for technical assistance for energy efficiency measures. Since 2009, ELENA has awarded more than €160 million in grants, triggering an estimated investment of around €6 billion.
We’re also helping roll out smart meters in France, Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain and other countries, enabling tens of millions of consumers to better manage their electricity consumption.
Beyond the climate crisis, investments into green energy also address the problems of poverty, specifically energy poverty for millions of families struggling to pay their energy bills. For example, the Smart Finance for Smart Buildings initiative aims to make investment in energy efficiency projects in residential buildings more attractive to private investors. Up to 3.2 million European families could be helped out of energy poverty with this initiative, which also could create up to 220,000 new jobs.
Even before today’s board meeting, the European Investment Bank has targeted 25% of its financing at climate action—and the target will be even higher in our lending outside the European Union, at 35%. We have already been exceeding these targets (around 30% overall and 41.5% outside the Union in 2018. This gives us confidence that we can, indeed, achieve the ambitious goal of committing 50% of all our lending to climate action in the next decade.