Corporate Renewable Purchases Key to Meeting Europe’s RE Target

Europe has set a target that 32 percent of its energy should come from renewable energy by 2030 and corporates can play a big role in meeting this target.

Europe Target

Europe has set a target that 32 percent of its energy should come from renewables by 2030, up from 17.5 percent at present. And, corporates are and can play an even bigger role in meeting this target.

The last weeks have seen an abundance of significant solar and wind sourcing agreements from major corporates around the world. Google announced its largest corporate renewable purchase in history, including nearly 800 MW of new renewable energy in Europe. Amazon recently unveiled plans to reach 100 percent renewable energy by 2030.

Corporate sourcing of renewables has risen rapidly in Europe, with 7.5 GW of Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) deals signed over the past five years and 1.6 GW worth of deals in 2019 alone. More European countries are engaging in PPA deals: 13 countries have inked PPAs in 2019 so far. Commercial and industrial on-site corporate sourcing accounted for 3.4 GW in 2018 and is expected to grow considerably in the next decade.

Industrial and commercial consumers account for more than half of Europe’s energy consumption today. Powering these corporate consumers with renewable energy could deliver both significant reductions in CO2 emissions and make European industries more competitive due to the rapidly falling cost of renewables.

And, according to a recent study from the European Commission, if EU-based corporate buyers committed to sourcing renewable electricity to meet 30 percent of their total electricity demand by 2030, the EU renewable energy sector would generate more than EUR 750 billion in gross added value and over 220,000 new jobs.

WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson said that industry and businesses consume more than half of Europe’s electricity at present. And that they’re increasingly looking to power their operations with renewable electricity.

“This is good news for everyone. It saves money because renewables are the cheapest form of new power. It cuts CO2 emissions. And it boosts jobs and investment in renewables. But many European countries still have barriers to PPAs. They need to remove them to unlock the enormous potential of corporate sourcing of renewables in Europe.”

Governments can also play their part in facilitating more companies to source renewables, by removing administrative hurdles for corporate renewable PPAs, and on-site and direct investments in renewable energy generation that exist throughout Europe. Under the new Renewable Energy Directive, European governments now have the duty to remove these barriers. Currently, only two of the draft National Energy and Climate Plans for 2030 even mention PPAs and none comply with the agreed legislation.

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Ayush Verma

Ayush Verma

Ayush is a staff writer at saurenergy.com and writes on renewable energy with a special focus on solar and wind. Prior to this, as an engineering graduate trying to find his niche in the energy journalism segment, he worked as a correspondent for iamrenew.com.

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