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Renewable energy in the EU

European Parliament sends a strong message in favour of renewables

There is now a clear and loud message towards the European Commission on how the forthcoming EU legislation on renewables -due to be adopted by the Commission on 5 December 2007 - should look like. The European Parliament's vote of Tuesday enables the European Commission to come up with a strong proposal guaranteeing that renewable energies will be exploited. In addition, the Greens managed to get rid of nuclear in the final text.

The agrofuels issue was -and will continue to be- the most controversial issue. The Greens' amendment to get a full impact assessment before setting and implementing a possible 10% target for agrofuels was unfortunaltely defeated. Therefore the report remains unchanged and supports the goal of a 10% share for agrofuels in transport provided that "it can be proved that such fuels are produced in a sustainable way". 

While the European Parliament is recalling its (Greens) position of having 25% of renewable energies by 2020 and a roadmap for achieving a 50% share by 2040, the final report however backed up the European Council's position to get a mandatory target of 20% of renewables to be shared amongst Member States. The report calls also for a sectoral approach so that we can have at least 32% of electricity made from renewables in 2020, similarly to double the share of renewables for the production of heat and cool (e.g air-conditioning).

The national Renewables Action Plans (RAP) should include binding sectoral targets and must be assessed by the Commission (and if not in line with the EU overall target - rejected) . The report also calls on the Commission to include a midterm target in order to take action if a Member State is not fulfilling its obligations.

The Greens also managed to have supports for concentrating solar power, an implementation programme for the large scale deployment of passive and net positive houses, a call for a widespread adoption by Member States of the solar obligation for the renovation of old buildings and for new buildings (as it is already the case in Israel or Barcelona for instance) etc...

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