Monday, April 15, 2024

The EU must double annual renewables deployment to meet climate targets

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A new report by Agora Energiewende and Ember found that renewables overtook fossil fuels in both the EU and UK in 2020. The milestone has been achieved over a season before, but this was the first time that’s happened over a year. And while the progress is fantastic news, there’s still much more work to be done if Europe is to meet its ambitious climate targets.

To hit the target of a 55% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, the EU has to double the pace of renewables deployment through the 2020s. This decade’s average tally for new yearly additions of wind and solar capacity will have to be around 100 terawatt-hours. Last year those two sources only generated an extra 55 terawatt-hours. The average annual expansion through the 2010s was 38 terawatt-hours.

Patrick Graichen, Agora Energiewende’s director, said: “To achieve the 100 terawatt-hours of annual expansion required for climate-neutrality, however, the level [of] 2020 needs to be doubled. The economic recovery after the pandemic must not slow down climate protection. We…need a strong climate policy — such as the Green Deal — to guarantee steady progress.”

Doubling new renewable energy generation isn’t as challenging as it sounds, and it’s definitely not impossible. Forecasts by wind and solar trade associations have even shown a possible increase in capacity of that magnitude on the horizon. Read more…

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