Friday, 19 February 2010

Europe on course to meet 2020 renewables targets – EWEA

London, 18 February:
The EU is on course to slightly exceed its target of sourcing 20% of its energy from renewables by 2020, according to the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA).
However, a leading renewable energy consultant has suggested that EWEA has been somewhat “quick on the buzzer” and that, while policies may be in place, delivery is less certain.
Brussels-based EWEA has carried out an analysis of all 27 member states’ national renewable energy forecasts documents, submitted to the European Commission.
Twenty-one countries say they are set to meet or exceed their targets, led by Spain, which claims to be on course to reach 22.7% renewables by 2020, three percentage points above its targets (click here for a table).
Six do not expect to meet their targets through domestic action alone, with Italy at the bottom of the league – although none of these six expect to be more than one percentage point adrift.
“Europe has witnessed a sea-change since the 2009 Renewable Energy Directive was agreed as in 2008 many countries were stating that their target would be difficult to meet – now the majority are forecasting that they will meet or exceed their national target,” said Justin Wilkes, Policy Director of EWEA.
Arnaud Bouillé, a London-based director in consultancy Ernst & Young’s energy and environmental infrastructure business, welcomed the development of renewable energy policy shown by the submissions.
“From a policy perspective, its fantastic to see … a large amount of policy leadership. But if you go through the submissions, it’s not as clear cut as it seems.
“There are issues around delivery, and whether the market will be able to react to [the] incentives. It’s yet to be seen,” he said.
Specifically, he noted that offshore wind is expected to make “a significant contribution. Targets are very ambitious and are unlikely to be met.”
Nonetheless, Germany expects to exceed its 18% target by 0.7 percentage points, while Estonia, Greece, Ireland, Poland, Slovakia and Sweden all expect to over-comply.
The six who expect to miss their targets are Belgium, Italy, Luxembourg and Malta, together with Bulgaria and Denmark. However, these last two say they plan to introduce additional policies to meet their goals.
Italy, meanwhile, foresees importing renewable energy from neighbouring non-EU countries (Albania, Croatia, Serbia and Tunisia), EWEA says.