Some regional organizations, such as the European Union, and certain national governments have created structures for dealing with energy issues, particularly in the field of oil and gas. The goal is to coordinate policy or to facilitate the domestic implementation of decisions resulting from international agreements.
A number of countries have created special authorities to deal with oil and gas policy:
- In France, the Directorate General for Energy and Climate monitors the energy market, oversees oil and gas production in France, manages strategic oil and gas reserves, and partners with producing countries.
- In the United States, the Department of Energy (DOE) ensures the country’s security of supply, helps draft policies to combat global warmingGlobal warming, also called planetary warming or climate change... , and supports energy-related R&D and innovation.
There are also a number of national, regional and local agencies that provide consumers and industry with information and advice on how to make the most of oil and gas resources and shrink their environmental footprint. These include:
- Agence de l'Environnement et de la Maîtrise de l'Energie (ADEME – French Environment and Energy Management Agency): founded in 1991, the agency1 helps implement public policy in the fields of the environment, energy and sustainable developmentThis term was first defined in the Brundtland Report, published in 1987, as “development that meets the needs of the present without... . It shares its expertise with businesses, municipalities, public authorities and the general public and also helps finance projects.
- Deutsche Energie-Agentur GmbH (DENA - German Energy Agency).
- Brussels Energy Agency (BEA) in Belgium.
European Union Institutions
In 2010, the European Commission created a special directorate devoted to energy policy
There are several authorities within the European Commission that deal with oil and gas policy in the areas of transportation, climate and industry. The Directorate-General for Energy,2 set up in February 2010, focuses more specifically on developing and implementing policies with regard to:
- Oil and gas supply (pricing, energy market performance, energy independenceThe ability of a country or region to meet all its energy needs without having to import primary or final energy. , resource availability, and supply-demand alignment).
- Oil and gas use by industry and consumers.
- The fight against global warming, by reducing reliance on oil and gas and developing renewable energyEnergy sources that are naturally replenished so quickly that they can be considered inexhaustible on a human time scale... sources.
In addition, most of the other European Union institutions — the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union, the European Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions and the European Investment Bank — have established commissions or special units dealing with issues related to energy, including oil and gas, and to climate change.3