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New opportunities in sustainable energy for defence sector

Brussels - 20 October, 2017

The European Defence Agency (EDA) and the European Commission today launched the second phase of the Consultation Forum for Sustainable Energy in the Defence and Security Sector. The Consultation Forum aims to examine how energy efficiency measures, renewable energy sources and technologies, and protection of critical energy infrastructure considerations apply to the European defence sector.

This second phase will see the initiative move towards the identification of bottlenecks preventing the sector from fully benefiting from sustainable energy. This will help the work move towards more concrete implementation, in view of seizing the economic benefits presented by the transition to clean energy.

“The second phase of the Consultation Forum presents the defence sector with a fresh opportunity to collaborate with the European Commission on energy efficiency, renewable energy, and the protection of critical energy infrastructure. Energy security is a key priority for European armed forces, and by acting together, we can improve the resilience of military activities at home and on missions, as well as reduce cost and operational risks, while contributing to the broader objectives of the Energy Union. We must now capitalize on this initiative and deliver real benefits through the initiation of defence energy projects”, said EDA Chief Executive Jorge Domecq.

“All strands of our energy policy, whether it is energy efficiency or renewables, security of supply or interconnections, have an impact on European defence. While energy efficiency and renewable energy policies were almost not known in the defence and security sector, the Consultation Forum has been key in changing the approach and revealing the significant potential. I am therefore very pleased that the Consultation Forum is entering its second phase which will enable us to explore further how this initiative could be both turned into concrete improvements in the ways which the defence and security sector uses energy and transformed into a real economic opportunity”, Dominique Ristori, Director-General Energy, said.

The first phase of the work brought together a majority of Member States’ Ministries of Defence alongside NATO, the NATO Energy Security Centre of Excellence, industry and academia, and led to the creation of a European Defence Energy Network (EDEN) with over 100 members. Plenary meetings of the Consultation Forum were held in Brussels (January 2016), Dublin (June 2016), Rome (November 2016), Lisbon (May 2017), and Thessaloniki (September 2017), looking at the challenges and opportunities of moving to a sustainable energy future in the defence sector, including the implications of relevant EU energy legislation for defence.  

The second phase of the Consultation Forum will focus on the identification of bottlenecks preventing the sector from fully reaping the benefits of sustainable energy. The aim is to work towards more concrete implementation, and to identify the tools and opportunities that will transform the knowledge developed to date into tangible defence sector energy projects. Work will be conducted by three parallel working groups covering: (1) Energy Efficiency including Energy Management (2), Renewable Energy Sources, and (3) Protection of Critical Energy Infrastructure (PCEI), with finance as a cross-cutting theme. This initiative is a Coordination and Support Action which received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant Agreement No 789231.

Further information can be found on EDA's European Defence Energy Network (EDEN) webpage.



The Consultation Forum for Sustainable Energy in the Defence and Security Sector is a European Commission initiative managed by the EDA, the first initiative of its kind for these institutions. It brings together experts from the defence and energy sectors to share information and best practices on improving energy management, energy efficiency, and the use of renewable energy.

The first phase of the Consultation Forum was announced on 20 October 2015 for a period of 24 months. The work was carried out in three parallel working groups: (1) Energy Management, (2) Energy Efficiency, and (3) Renewable Energy Sources. An Experts Group on Protection of Critical Energy Infrastructure (PCEI) developed a PCEI Conceptual Paper.





Participating Member States

  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Czech
  • Germany
  • Estonia
  • Ireland
  • Greece
  • Spain
  • France
  • Croatia
  • Italy
  • Cyprus
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Hungary
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Austria
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovenia
  • Slovakia
  • Finland
  • Sweden