In times when Climate neutrality towards the middle of this century, or in the decade after, in many countries world-wide, energy efficiency policy is more than just a pillar in climate neutrality but the essential ingredient to make other policies more powerful and acceptable such as renewables policies, the hydrogen economy as well as a sustainable bio-economy or carbon-capture and storage (CCS/CCU). All supply-side low-carbon solutions lead to larger environmental and socio-economic impacts such as resource use, (new) import dependencies, distributional effects among consumer groups and possible acceptance issues.
It is for this reason that the key role of energy efficiency is supported in the European Union by the Energy Efficiency First Principle. It is recognised as a guiding principle of the Union energy policy and should be taken into account across all sectors, going beyond the energy system, at all levels, including in the financial sector. Energy efficiency solutions should be considered as the first option in planning and investment decisions, when setting new rules for the supply side and other policy areas.