Brussels, 24th May 2011. At the occasion of its biannual Policy Conference (EREC 2011), EREC calls for a legally binding renewable energy target of 45% of final energy consumption in the EU by 2030. This appeal comes as a request to ensure that the European Union deliver on its 80-95% greenhouse emissions reduction commitment by 2050 (compared to 1990 levels) and maintain its increasingly challenged industrial leadership in renewable energy technologies.
There is a far reaching agreement that Europe’s energy system must undergo radical change. With today’s policies, however, the EU is set to fail meeting its long-term climate ambition. The European Commission estimates in its low carbon economy roadmap that a continuation of current trends and policies would result in only a 40% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. “EU energy policy needs to be geared up to reach the Heads of State commitment of reducing GHG emissions by 80-95%. What’s more, to keep its pole position in terms of competitiveness, we need a legally binding target for renewables of 45% by 2030 as this would make up a clear signal for investors and unlock crucial private investments”, said Arthouros Zervos, President of EREC.
“By 2030, Upper Austria will cover 100% of its space heat and electricity demand from renewable energy sources”, asserted Rudi Anschober, Regional Minister for Energy of Upper Austria. “Regions are going ahead and putting in place the measures on the ground to make Europe take a truly sustainable pathway. Brussels needs to follow our example and catch up!”
“If Europe wants to maintain its renewable energy leadership, we at First Solar, believe that a stable policy framework and a 45% target for 2030 is a prerequisite”, stated Maja Wessels, Executive Vice President for Public Affairs at First Solar, solar module manufacturers.
“At present, almost 50% of the total energy consumed in Europe is used for the generation of heat for either domestic or industrial purposes”, highlighted Gerhard Stryi-Hipp, President of the Renewable Heating & Cooling (RHC) Technology Platform. “If we are serious about moving towards a truly sustainable energy system in the EU, renewables need to be boosted and a target for the next decade would do just that”.
EREC 2011, organised by EREC and the Hungarian Presidency of the EU, is the gathering ground for high-level EU officials, politicians and the renewable energy industry, to discuss Europe’s energy pathway. http://www.erec.org/erec2011/welcome.html