With heavy sanctions placed on Russian trade in the wake of the Russian invasion of the Ukraine, concerns about the European Union’s dependency on Russian oil and fossil fuels have been raised. The potential for continued conflict with Russia has spurred European policy makers to urge sustainability goals forward. Citing the security risks inherent in depending on any one nation to meet their collective energy needs, the European Commission has decided to update their energy strategy in the coming week.
While the need to gradually transition to sustainable energy sources has been important to environmental and climate wellbeing, it is quickly becoming a matter of regional security. More sustainable energy sources would enable Europe to become energy self-sufficient, lending more stability to their energy supply by making it resistant to external influences. Germany stands among the countries leading this transition forward, having already moved up their sustainability goal deadline to 2035.
However, while renewable energy sources are an important part of gaining energy security, concerns about energy distribution have also been raised. The European Commission is expected to speak on the need for a more robust energy network within European electricity grids. Many policymakers have reiterated the importance of ensuring that European energy systems were resistant to power cuts that would interfere with essential services. These issues emphasize the importance and efficiency of renewable energy sources which can be produced and distributed locally.