Long-Term Renewable Energy Targets Must Be Set Now, Experts Say


A recent debate on EU energy policy for post-2020 concluded that a 45% renewable energy target for 2030 would create the future policy-stability that is necessary for the alternative energy sector.

According to a post on European Wind Energy Association’s blog, these new energy policies must be drawn-up today and not in 2020 when current targets expire.

The post calls attention to two key facts: the Fukushima nuclear disaster and the record emissions in 2010, which reached the highest level in history. As Guardian journalist Fiona Harvey noted, recessions do not necessarily mean fewer emissions.

Renewable energy can fill the gap left by the retirement of nuclear, and there is more than enough of it, according to the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

There are threats to the transition to alternative energy, though. Cheap gas supply is one of them and, to counter that, policy makers need to fix renewable energy targets beyond 2020. There is a large enough fossil fuel supply to alter the climate beyond sustainable levels, Niels Ladefoged, a member of Connie Hedegaard’s European Commission for Climate Action cabinet, warned.

Another topic discussed during the debate was the necessary modernization of the grid to meet future energy demand. Grids need to be extended, upgraded and better connected, it was said, although there is no agreement as to how it can be done since new grid design depends on a future energy system.

Article by Antonio Pasolini, a Brazilian writer and video art curator based in London, UK. He holds a BA in journalism and an MA in film and television.

About Author

Walter’s contributions to CleanTechies over the past 4 years have been instrumental in growing the publications social media channels via his ongoing editorial and data driven strategies. He is the founder and managing director of Sunflower Tax, a renewable energy tax and finance consultancy based in San Diego, California. Active in the San Diego clean technology community, participating in events sponsored by CleanTech San Diego, EcoTopics, and Cleantech Open San Diego, Walter has also been a presenter at numerous California Center for Sustainability (CCSE) programs. He currently serves as an adjunct professor at the University of San Diego School of Law where he teaches a course on energy taxation and policy.

1 Comment

  1. As always I don’t think we should replace nuclear by renewables, at least for the time being.

    I believe the expansion of renewables should be used to replace coal. Because it is the environmental enemy number one as the Economist wrote years ago.

    And we should go MASSIVELY into efficiency. Too little is said about it whereas this is where the largest – and the cheapest – parts of a more sustainable energy supply lies…

    Go solar, yes

    Go wind power, yes

    But GO GO GO energy efficiency !