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Research Colloquium: Managing the Energy Security-Climate Change nexus: European Union as a Normative Power?
Date: 23 March 2010 

Research Colloquium Spring 2010

Managing the Energy Security-Climate Change nexus: European Union as a Normative Power?

Ms Wong Nga Ting
Mphil. Candidate (European Studies)

Date: Mar 23, 2010 (Tuesday)
Time: 16:00 to 17:00
Venue: KKLG 106, KK Leung Building

Despite its foundation on European Coal and Steel Community, modern-day European Union (EU) has little competence in energy security policy and it remains largely the national states’ business.  On the contrary, creative and assertive climate change policies have emerged in the past 2 decades to establish EU as an international environmental actor.  As Europe is leading to hedge the global Climate Change challenge, she finds herself at the same time more and more susceptible to energy supply risk.  The global depletion of energy reserve, price volatility and geopolitical risk are making traditional fossil fuels, e.g. oil and natural gas increasing less desirable in economic and strategic terms.  Meanwhile, the mainstreaming of “Sustainability” into EU’s different policy areas proves a timely catalyst to a rethinking of current carbon-intensive economic regime, and perhaps a total paradigm shift to a sustainable energy model as well.  

This thesis argues that the intricate energy and climate challenge require EU to strike a balance between economic competitiveness, energy stability and sustainability.  The cross-sectoral challenge will entail a further cooperation led by EU amongst multilayered actors: internal and external; national, international and supranational.  It is assumed that a distinctive set of normative agenda permeate EU’s policy goals and implementation which potentially seem to contribute to EU’s propensity in the area.  Hopefully the recipe of EU’s aptitude can be extrapolated to shed light on other countries facing similar problem or even on other global problems.


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