Study says EU lags behind schedule for 20% clean energy target by 2020
(ADPnews) - Nov 19, 2010 - The EU will have trouble meeting its target of 20% renewable sources in the energy mix by 2020 due to a slow pace of change, the twelfth edition of the Capgemini European Energy Markets Observatory (EEMO) report says.
Green energy production increased in 2009, driven by a 15% rise in wind power and 53% growth in solar power, however at a slower pace than in 2008.
According to the European Commission, wind power will provide some 500 TWh of the 1,200 TWh growth in clean energy output needed to meet the target. But the most appropriate onshore wind sites have been taken so far, which implies the development of expensive and complicated offshore wind farms, the study says.
At the same time project financing in the EU has become scarce because of the financial crisis while many countries are reducing state subsidies to solar or wind energy development.
The non-compulsory target of the EU to reduce the energy consumption to 1,520 million tonnes of oil equivalent in 2020 from 1,750 in 2005 is also hard to achieve, according to the report. Primary energy consumption in the region fell by 5.6% in 2009 due to lower industrial activity, but meeting the goal implies reduction from the buildings and transportation industries and requires investments and innovations.
However, the study found that the EU is on track on its 2020 carbon dioxide emissions reduction target. In 2009, greenhouse gas emissions in Europe decreased by 7% on the year. The target should be met and exceeded with a further soft economy and shifting industrial plants out of Europe, the report says.