Stage set for fight over EU’s 2030 renewable energy target

(EurActiv, 23 Dec 2022) A majority of EU member states have backed a 40% target for renewable energies like wind and solar by 2030 – a far cry from the 45% objective tabled by the European Commission and supported by Parliament earlier this year in response to Russia’s war in Ukraine.

Speeding up the deployment of renewables is “a key component of our agenda to phase out Russian fossil fuels” and isolate Moscow, said Kadri Simson, the EU’s energy commissioner, who spoke during a meeting of the EU’s Energy Council on Monday (19 December).

The 51 gigawatts of wind and solar capacity installed in 2022 have helped the EU save around 10 billion cubic meters of gas, she added to illustrate the contribution of renewables to Europe’s energy independence.

The European Parliament agrees. In September, MEPs voted overwhelmingly in favour of the 45% objective. And their view matters since Parliament has an equal say as EU member states when it comes to the adoption of EU laws.

Yet, the bloc’s 27 energy ministers could only find a majority to back the 40% target tabled by the EU executive the year before the Russian invasion, reiterating a stance already expressed at an earlier meeting in June.

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EurActiv, 23 Dec 2022: Stage set for fight over EU’s 2030 renewable energy target