Maintaining a competitive EU requires industries to decarbonize and innovate, reduce dependencies on the import of energy, critical minerals and strategic industrial components, and establish new supply chains. Global energy markets are in search of an equilibrium that can be best understood through a geopolitical lens. Multilateralism is changing shape as the world is increasingly governed by emerging geopolitical blocs, new allegiances and a new trading system based on minimising dependencies on non-aligned blocs.
The energy transition is rich in opportunities – innovation and the accelerated deployment of green energy technology can make Europe a global leader in sustainability. The successful integration of industrial and climate policies can bring important advantages for European strategic autonomy. Yet a net-zero competitive EU is becoming increasingly difficult to achieve considering the growing global protectionism for strategic technologies and raw materials.
In this paper, HCSS analysts Irina Patrahau, Lucia van Geuns and Michel Rademaker assess these geopolitical developments, focusing on the impact of the war in Ukraine on European energy security and decarbonization, with a specific focus on the tank storage sector.
First, the paper looks at the impacts of the war on market volatility and supply security in the short term (2-3 years). Second, it provides an overview of the challenges and opportunities arising from the transition on a longer term (10-20 years). Finally, recommendations are derived to support a smooth transition from fossil fuels to green technologies and ensure supply security in the process.
This publication builds on the Energy storage in transition series, developed since 2020 by The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies. The series consists of the following publications:
- The European tank storage sector and the global energy landscape
- European tank storage in today’s global value chains: What role does it play in our economy?
- European tank storage in global supply chains: Outlook to 2030
- The European tank storage sector: 2050 and beyond
- Energy trade in the Netherlands: Past, present and future
The conclusions and recommendations presented in this paper are the result of independent research. Responsibility for the content rests with the authors and the authors alone. The research was made possible by a financial contribution from FETSA (Federation of European Tank Storage Associations) to the Hague Centre for Strategic Studies.