On 19 October WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson participated to the 18th Inter-Parliamentary Meeting on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency organised by the European Forum for Renewable Energy (EUFORES) in Vienna.
In a panel discussion dedicated to the Clean Energy Package, Dickson presented the key provisions that will help the renewable electricity sector to contribute to Europe’s long-term climate commitments. He insisted on the crucial role of the National Energy and Climate Plans that Member States need to draft by the end of year: “These plans will serve as investment brochures for our members. We’ve seen this in the past: our members will invest in the markets where they see the most promising wind development. When good policies are absent, jobs go away. We need to take the right steps to maximise development over the next decade.” Dickson said.
These plans need to be further complemented by a clear visibility on the volumes and timing of wind energy auctions for the next 5 years, and how much budget is allocated to them. They should also come with a clear vision on how to tackle the existing wind farms reaching end of their operational life.
Dickson called on Member States to deliver on shorter lead times for permitting. “It should take no more than 3 years from the moment authorities receive the project’s application. And this should be only 2 years for repowering projects”, Dickson said.
He noted that reform of electricity market design is a key driver to reduce the costs of renewables integration.
“But there’s one thing the Clean Energy Package has forgotten: electrification. We need to bring renewable electricity in transport, heating and industry. Directly or indirectly via green hydrogen. This is now technically and economically possible”, Dickson said. The European Union can still make a difference here. In its future budget it needs to include financial support for upscaling electrolysers used in the industry and large heat pumps into our district heating and cooling networks.