Tackling the EU Agenda on 2030 Renewable Targets

Written by | Thursday, January 9th, 2014

Ministers of eight EU member states – including Germany and France – have called on Brussels to set up realistic but profound renewable goals to be achieved by 2030 as a result of strengthening momentum in emission-cutting. The ministerial proposal has been submitted to the Climate Commissioner, Connie Hedegaard, and Energy Commissioner, Günther Oettinger, in late December 2013.
The ministers said that the EU needed a robust and long-term agenda in support of renewable energies despite a variety of views on operational modalities. In their opinion, the effort in sustainable and renewable energy sector will boost the EU’s competitiveness, which will ultimately lead to job creation and economic growth. Ministers added that a clean energy target is key to ensuring that the industry will attract cost-effective investment.
The proposal put forward by the eight ministers, including Germany’s economy minister Sigmar Gabriel, Italy’s and France’s environment ministers Andrea Orlando and Philippe Martin, respectively, comes in the wake of the upcoming unveiling of the EU climate and energy package on January 22. The new set of laws is believed to encompass new legislation regarding shale gas, tar sands, carbon market, and industrial competition.
The crux of the package, though, should be the 2030 climate and energy goals that should draw upon the current “20-20-20 targets” of 20 percent emissions cuts, efficiency gains, and a share of renewable market by the end of 2020. The letter drafted by the ministers to Commissioner Oettinger is believed to be part of a lobby accompanying the battle over EU energy targets with Poland or Great Britain, which are to some extent against too much emphasis on renewable resources as their economies do rely on traditional, not-so-green, energy resources. Poland, for example, is heavily coal-dependent, and Great Britain, in contrast, described the current energy discourse as “inflexible and unnecessary” preventing the development of other energy options such as carbon capture and storage or nuclear, gas, or experimental technologies.

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