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Windtech International May June 2024 issue






European Commision Shows the Way

Last year the European Council agreed that the European Union will increase the share of renewable energy to 20% by the year 2020. The EU has adopted this share as a binding overall target for its Member States. These targets are very ambitious: today 8.5% of energy is renewable (of which wind energy is the biggest part). To achieve a 20% share by 2020 will require major efforts across all sectors of the economy and by all Member States. A European approach is needed to ensure that the effort for reaching the 20% target is shared equitably between Member States.

{access view=!registered}Only logged in users can view the full text of the article.{/access}{access view=registered}To achieve the renewable energy policy goals, the European Commission recently proposed a Directive. This aims to establish national renewable energy targets that result in an overall binding target of a 20% share of renewable energy sources in energy consumption in 2020. If the overall 20% target for renewables is to be reached in an effective manner, the individual targets for each Member State have to be determined as fairly as possible. The Commission has therefore put forward a simple five-step approach:
  • The share of renewable energy in 2005 (the base year for all calculations in the package) is modulated to reflect national starting points and efforts already made for Member States that achieved an increase of above 2% between 2001 and 2005.
  • 5.5% is added to the modulated 2005 share of renewable energy for every Member State.
  • This remaining effort (0.16 tonne of oil equivalent - toe - for each person in the EU) is weighted by a GDP per capita index to reflect different levels of wealth across Member States, then multiplied by each Member State's population.
  • These two elements are added together to derive the full renewable energy share of total final energy consumption in 2020.
  • Lastly, an overall cap on the target share for renewable energy in 2020 is applied for individual Member States.

This method of setting the targets provides for a fair distribution of effort across Member States. At the same time, the creation of a tradable guarantee of origin regime allows Member States to reach their targets in the most cost-effective manner possible: instead of developing local renewable energy sources, Member States will be able to buy guarantees of origin (certificates proving the renewable origin of energy) from other Member States where the development of renewable energy is cheaper to produce.

The next step is that the 27 Member States commit to these national targets, and for the sake of our industry it is to be hoped they do that quickly. With this Directive and public opinion in favour we don't want and cannot afford to lose the momentum.

Enjoy reading,

Floris Siteur

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