EU countries are well on the way to meeting the EU's target for 20% renewable energy in the overall energy supply by 2020, a new report shows.
Presented on 16 June, the European Commission's renewable energy progress report reveals that 25 EU countries are expected to meet their 2013/2014 interim renewable energy targets. In 2014, the projected share of renewable energy in the gross final energy consumption is 15.3%.
"The report shows once again that Europe is good at renewables, and that renewables are good for Europe. We have three times more renewable power per capita in Europe than anywhere else in the rest of the world. We have more than one million people working in a renewable energy sector worth over €130 bn a year and we export €35 bn worth of renewables every year," Miguel Arias Cañete, Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, said.
The EU's 2020 renewables target has resulted in around 326 Mt of avoided CO2 emissions in 2012, rising to 388 Mt in 2013. It has also led to a reduction in the EU's demand for fossil fuels to the tune of 116 Mtoe (2013 figure), boosting the EU's security of energy supply.
Just three EU countries are falling slightly behind in meeting their targets, and, since the interim targets will become tougher in the coming years, some EU countries will have to intensify their efforts and make use of mechanisms which allow them to cooperate with other EU countries, the report says.
It also noted that renewable energy is now a widely accepted, mainstream source of energy, with the 2020 targets being a key driver for European-led global investments in renewables and a source of inspiration for other countries the world over which now have their own targets.
The report also examined the EU's target for 10% renewable energy in transport. The 2014 projected share is 5.7% meaning that achieving the target will be challenging but feasible, with some EU countries making good progress.
The EU publishes a progress report on renewable energy every two years.