Major Tool for Sustainable Market Development of the Renewable Energy Sector

The European Renewable Energy Council- representing the European renewable energy industry, trade and research associations- welcomes the directive proposal on renewable energy released today by the European Commission: The proposal will – when further improved during the legislative process- be a major tool for reaching the 20% target, for developing in a sustainable way the renewable energy sector, thereby enhancing our security of supply, reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and creating jobs in the European Union.

“The European Commission drafted a coherent proposal addressing all renewable energy sectors”, said EREC President Arthouros Zervos. “The long awaited Directive contains the necessary elements which should help meet the 20% target. Now we expect the Member States and the Parliament to further improve the legislative document and agree on the directive this year since time is running out. We hope that all parties will stick to their commitments to make this happen. The whole world is watching us. It is up to us to prove the EU is serious and efficient in guaranteeing affordable and clean energy supply to its citizens”, adds EREC’s President.

“If clarified and improved by the European Parliament and the Council, the Directive will go a long way to enable the European renewable energy industry to develop and to achieve the 2020 renewables target”, said Prof. Zervos. “The race for meeting the targets has already started; we warmly invite all national and local authorities not to wait until the Directive enters into force: national support schemes should be strengthened immediately.”

In view of the renewable energy industry, the main elements to improve are the integration of an enforcement mechanism for Member States not complying with their intermediate targets, the calculation of imports from outside the EU, certain technical specifications for technologies, clearer wording in the section of guarantees of origin and a clarification of sustainability criteria. The calculation of the intermediary targets should also make sure that Member States’ efforts are well-distributed over the years and that the whole burden is not left to the final years before 2020. All these elements can now be discussed publicly and modified accordingly.

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