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Energy Blog 8 Push EU for Renewable Energy Target

8 Push EU for Renewable Energy Target

Chris Hurcombe
by Chris Hurcombe January 8, 2014
Energy Prices

In addition to goals for recycling and carbon dependency, ministers from some of Europe’s most influential countries are lobbying the EU to set a target for renewable energy.A letter signed by ministers from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy and Portugal is calling on Brussels to set a 2030 goal for renewable energy use. The ministers involved in constructing the proposition say less reliance on fossil fuels will only boost the European economy and create new jobs in the commercial energy sector.

“A target for renewable energy is crucial to provide certainty that can ensure cost-effective investments in energy systems that will strengthen the internal market for energy,” the group of energy and environment ministers said in the letter to Connie Hedegaard, the EU commissioner for climate action, and Guenther Oettinger, commissioner for energy.

Still very much unsure of it’s own internal energy market, the British counterparts say they will only support a unified greenhouse gas emissions target as an achievable deadline for 2030, with a number of other EU obligations to meet for 2020.

Britain’s energy and climate change secretary Ed Davey has said using greenhouse gas reduction as a measure would give more countries the flexibility they need to accommodate changes to their commercial energy grids within their budgets, as well as provide scope for projects like nuclear power.

Commercial renewable energy investments have been tagged as risky ventures in the UK, thanks to the looming shadow of ‘new nuclear’ and new fracking powers afforded to the central government. However, a firm goal like the suggested 2030 target France, Germany & Co. are pushing for would provide a more stable market for producers of wind turbines and solar panels.

The 22nd of January will be a day to keep a keen eye on, as the European Commission is expected to unveil any new proposed 2030 packages and goals for then. Reuters are already reporting that could be as major as a 40% emissions reduction target and a 30% renewables goal, succeeding the three 2020 benchmarks of a 20% emissions drop from levels recorded in 1990 and a 20% share for renewable energy and energy savings of 20%, again in comparison to 1990.