EU to miss 2050 GHG goals – EWEA

The EU is on course to miss its 2050 emissions targets unless it puts a new policy framework in place to drive reductions post-2020, the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) has warned.

EWEA said the European Commission’s own latest data shows the mid-century goal of 80%-95% emissions reductions won’t be met under current policies.

The Commisison’s latest reference scenario shows greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions falling by 24% in 2020 but only by 44% in 2050, benchmarked on 1990 levels. Dependency on energy imports would also rise.

The wind body said the outlook underlines the need for “an ambitious 2030 climate and energy framework, with targets for renewable energy and GHG reductions.

“Without such targets energy security and a zero-carbon power sector will be impossible," said Justin Wilkes, EWEA's deputy CEO.

The issue of a 2030 EU renewable energy target – or alternatively an all-encompassing emissions target – is a live one in the bloc, ahead of White Paper on the issue due to be released by the Commission later this month.

EWEA added that even existing policies show strong growth for wind power.

“More wind power capacity will be installed over the next 20 years than any other generating technology – accounting for 37% of new installations – with the result that wind energy will be the leading generating technology in Europe by 2040,” EWEA said.

But the body added: “However, a sharp decline in new installations of wind power from 2021 onwards of 27% highlights the vital importance of a long-term stable regulatory framework for the sector, underpinned by a 2030 renewable energy target.”