European Commission Ponders Hiking Renewable Energy Target To 45% By 2030

Highlights :

  • Deputy Director General of the Energy Department of the European Commission informed about the plan in a meeting of EU lawmakers.
  • The Commission wants to phase out Russian gas dependence by 2027.

The Ukraine-Russia conflict, and the vagaries of climate change might just have nudged the European Commission when it comes to its renewable energy targets. The European Commission is analyzing if the Union can achieve a higher aim of having 45% of its energy coming from renewable sources by 2030. Currently the European Commission has proposed a target of 40% renewables in their energy basket by the end of this decade.

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Mechthild Woersdoerfer, Deputy Director General of the Energy Department, European Commission informed in a meeting of EU lawmakers, “We are working on it full speed to take account, first of all the proposal of going from 45% to 40%, but also in the context of higher energy prices.”

The European Commission wants the wind and solar capacity of the EU countries to rise three times by 2030. To save about 170 bcm of  gas demand – which is mostly supplied by Russia – will need the addition of 480 GW of wind power and 420 GW of solar power. Presently, even as smaller European economies like Lithuania depend on Russian oil and gas for over 50% of their energy needs, the largest, Germany buys a much higher quantum of Russian oil and gas to keep its economy running, even if the share of Russian sources is lower in its case.

Mechthild Woersdoerfer informed that the European Commission is looking to publish a plan coming May to quit Russian fossil fuels by 2027 and the plan will include a legal proposal under which permits for renewable energy projects will be easier to realize.

At present the European Union has 22% of its energy coming from renewable sources and Russia remains the bloc’s top gas supplier.

In March, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen had urged Europe for quick expansion of renewable sources of power to achieve energy security and displace Russian gas dependency.

Recently, EU’s climate policy head Frans Timmermans said that more ambitious targets are being developed for the EU for faster transition to renewable sources of energy. This is in line with phasing out the gas imports from Russia completely by 2027.

In January, the European Union announced a green deal of EUR 1 trillion to make the EU as the first carbon neutral bloc in the world.

Oil in fact is relatively easier to manage for now, with the challenge being the issue of gas, around which most indistries in the region have been set up. Some countries, notably Germany,  have actually announced plans to stop using Russian oil by the end of 2022, but gas purchases remain impossible to pause from Russia just yet.

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