EU Energy Ministers are set to adopt emergency measures this Thursday 24 November. That sounds good. However, as they stand, these measures constitute a step backwards in the simplification of permitting. In a letter to Ministers, leading wind industry CEOs call for urgent changes.
Permitting is the main bottleneck for the expansion of renewables. 80 GW of wind energy capacity are currently stuck in permitting procedures across Europe. The simplification and acceleration of permitting is essential, not least to strengthen Europe’s energy security.
The new EU energy strategy REPowerEU does a lot to simplify permitting. It’s introducing new rules that will apply to all renewables, both new projects and those currently in the permitting process. The European Council recently agreed there should be further emergency measures to accelerate permitting. These emergency measures are now up for agreement at this Thursday’s Energy Council.
As they stand, the emergency measures would only apply to new permit applications so would only unlock a small fraction of the wind energy projects currently under development. This is a step backwards compared to the REPowerEU measures.
20 leading wind industry CEOs have issued a letter today, saying it is impossible to justify this step backwards. Europe urgently needs more renewables to replace Russian gas and improve energy security. The emergency measures must apply to all permits.