Europe’s energy ministers met yesterday in Luxembourg to find common ground on the Renewable Energy Directive, a key part of the Clean Energy Package. It’s clear now that there is political momentum behind more European ambition for renewable energy.
Spain, Lithuania, Sweden, Italy and Portugal all put their weight behind a 35% renewable energy target for 2030. Others also called for a more ambitious target than the European Council’s official position of 27% shifting the dynamics in the discussion ahead of a crucial trialogue with the European Parliament tomorrow.
But while an ambitious target is crucial, having the right measures in place to reach that target is just as important. Countries will need to clarify well in advance their renewables auctioning schedules. Having clear national commitments to the volumes, timing and budget for renewable energy auctions for at least three years ahead is the surest way for Europe’s supply chain to deliver on the target cost-effectively.
Another point of crucial importance is the rulebook for Guarantees of Origin (GOs). The demand for green power, for example in the form of corporate renewable Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), is a key driver for the energy transition. GOs provide traceability to consumers, it’s critical that they underpin all renewable electricity production.
WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson said: “We’re now in the home stretch of the Clean Energy Package negotiations. There’s encouraging political momentum behind more ambition on the renewable energy target. But that ambition must come with the robust measures that will ensure its delivery. Key to that is countries providing timely commitments on their renewables deployment plans with at least three years’ notice of upcoming auctions. This’ll give investors visibility: countries shouldn’t be able to change their auction plans on a whim. The Clean Energy Package also offers a unique opportunity to make sure all green electricity can be tracked with Guarantees of Origin. Getting it wrong will be a wasted opportunity to provide consumers with the traceability they’re asking for”.