But renewables still face unfair competition from fossil fuels, often burnt in plants that have long since been paid off and that don’t pay the real price of the carbon pollution they cause.
That’s why the Commission’s recent proposals to revise the EU’s Renewable Energy Directive – and its proposals on reform of the electricity market and energy efficiency – are so important.
What is WWF doing?The EU has shown leadership on renewable energy in the past but is now falling behind the US and China. To turn this around and keep our climate goals within reach we need several things to be in place:
- We need ambitious, binding EU targets for renewable energy: the Commission’s proposed target of 27% renewable energy by 2030 should be raised to at least 45%.
- we need EU rules that incentivise and encourage investment in renewables. The Commission’s proposals do the opposite, and make it harder for Member States to support projects on their territory.
- we need an electricity market designed with variable renewables in mind. The Commission’s proposals go some way to achieving this, but don’t address the main problem: the existence on the EU grid of large numbers of old, inflexible, coal-fired plants.
- we need much stricter criteria on bioenergy, to ensure that biofuels and biomass offer genuine carbon savings over fossil fuels.
More about renewables
WWF briefing paper: Getting renewables back on track, 2017
WWF briefing paper on EU bioenergy policy, 2017
WWF briefing paper on revising the Renewable Energy Directive, 2016
EU building blocks for a successful energy transition, 2016
Joint NGO briefing: Four key messages for the governance of European climate and energy policies after 2020, 2015
Pitfalls and potentials - The role of bioenergy in the EU climate and energy policy post 2020: NGO recommendations, 2015