Cheaper Renewables Could Help Europe Set Tougher Climate Target
Plummeting renewable energy costs could open the door for the European Union to set more ambitious carbon reduction targets, according to a European Commission report reviewed by Reuters.
With “tough talks” now under way between EU countries and the European Parliament to set renewable energy targets for the crucial years from 2021 to 2030, “EU lawmakers are pushing for renewables to account for at least a 35% share by 2030, while national governments agreed a target of 27%,” the news agency reports. But the new EC report “says lower costs, together with other draft measures to improve energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, could cut the cost of achieving a 27% target by €2.9 billion (US$3.5 billion) a year.”
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That means “the cost of reaching a 30% target in today’s market would be comparable to reaching a 27% target under estimates in the 2016 assessment.”
“Such lower costs for the energy system are explained by lower investment needs for the same renewable electricity capacity,” the study states. Reuters says the study “foresees a transition to lower-emission technologies in the power, building, and transport sectors to reach the bloc’s climate goals” of reducing carbon pollution at least 40% from 1990 levels by 2030.