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2030 Climate and Energy Package: A long harvest for a little corn

(PresseBox) (Brussels, ) The European Commission has released today its set of proposals for a Climate and Energy framework for 2030. With a binding greenhouse gas emissions reduction target of 40%, a supposedly binding EU-wide target of 27% for renewable energy and nothing on energy efficiency, the Commission's proposals are falling far below the adequate level of ambition.

Despite the many voices that have called for an ambitious and meaningful renewable energy target for 2030, including eight Member States, the European Parliament as well as numerous businesses and NGOs, the European Commission has decided to put forward a disappointing framework proposal.

"While the binding 2020 target for renewables proved to be a success story, initiating massive costs reduction and technology leadership in Europe, the Commission's proposal for 2030 sadly is a lame duck," said Frauke Thies, EPIA Policy Director. "27% renewables by 2030 is indeed barely more than the Commission's business-as-usual scenario. In addition, it is an EU-wide target without binding national breakdowns. We are now looking at the European Council to make this supposedly binding target meaningful, by turning it into real national binding targets", she added.

Part of this so-called "2030 package" is a Communication on "Energy prices and costs in Europe". In the coming days, the Commission will also present a Staff Working Document on "Energy Economic Developments in Europe". Both documents contain interesting elements. "The Commission's analysis clearly shows that renewables help reduce wholesale electricity prices. But while large energy consumers are directly benefitting from this effect, those benefits are currently not passed onto the final consumers", stated Ms. Thies.

Finally, while support to renewables is the only type of support made visible to the consumer, previous analysis from the European Commission clearly shows that many tax exemptions and subsidies given to other forms of energy are not visible but still financed by taxpayers. "Much more transparency is needed on the support provided to fossil fuels and nuclear since decades. It's too easy and untrustworthy to blame only support to renewables," concluded Reinhold Buttgereit, EPIA Secretary General.

The European Council will now examine these proposals in March and June. EPIA, in coalition with other important stakeholders, will continue to promote a truly ambitious climate and energy policy framework for 2030 that is based on mutually-reinforcing and meaningful targets for renewable energy, energy efficiency and greenhouse gas reductions.

European Photovoltaic Industry Association

EPIA - the European Photovoltaic Industry Association - represents members active along the whole solar PV value chain: from silicon, cells and module production to systems development and PV electricity generation as well as marketing and sales. EPIA's mission is to give its global membership a distinct and effective voice in the European market, especially in the EU.