SolarPower Europe’s 100% Renewable Europe study demonstrated that the massive deployment of new renewable capacities combined with ambitious electrification strategies is the most cost-efficient solution to decarbonise our economy, at the lowest cost for society and while still maximizing societal benefits.
Therefore, with the increased ambition to achieve a 55% CO2 emissions reduction in the EU by 2030, an upward revision of the EU's 2030 renewable energy target and a review of the Renewable Energy Directive is unavoidable. The European Commission already expressed the need to increase the current 2030 renewable energy target from 32% to at least 38-40% of the EU's final energy demand. However, according to SolarPower Europe, the EU has the potential to reach 45% of renewables in the EU final energy demand by 2030, which would put the continent on track to deliver on the 1.5° Paris Agreement scenario.
Beyond targets, the review of the Renewable Energy Directive represents a unique opportunity to update the EU’s regulatory framework and ensure that Member States are empowered to implement the policies and measures needed to meet increased levels of ambition. The document released today by SolarPower Europe singled out six key recommendations from the solar industry, for a successful and future proof RED II. The recommendations can be consulted in this executive summary and at length, in this full document.
Walburga Hemetsberger, CEO of SolarPower Europe, commented: “Driven by its cost-competitiveness, the growth of the solar sector in the EU has been accelerating for the past few years, and we expect this trend to continue. However, business as usual will not deliver climate neutrality by 2050 and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% for 2030. To kick start a solar revolution, the review of the Renewable Energy Directive must remove the remaining administrative barriers to the development of renewable energy projects and strengthen the Guarantees of Origin framework, to support more corporates and EU businesses that are driving new renewable investments”
Aurélie Beauvais, Deputy CEO and Policy Director at SolarPower Europe, added: “According to all EU energy scenarios, renewable hydrogen will be the missing link to reach climate neutrality by 2050, achieving the full decarbonisation of sectors which are hard to electrify. The review of the RED II can put in place an essential steppingstone for Europe’s future renewable hydrogen industry, by developing a robust certification system, ensuring that this additional demand will be met by new renewable capacities and by proposing adequate support measures for producers and users of renewable hydrogen where relevant.”
Miguel Herrero Cangas, Policy Advisor at SolarPower Europe, added: “Unlocking the solar generation potential of all buildings in the EU would boost sustainable and resilient job creation and drive higher climate ambitions. In particular, Europe’s commercial and industrial rooftop segments have a huge potential. The RED II must introduce enabling provisions for mid-sized solar self-consumption installations between 30 kW and 1 MW to tap into over 500 GW of installed capacity by 2030. To drive the efficient integration of the energy system, this should be complemented by local-level targets to deploy decentralised generation and flexibility resources, in line with local urban and energy system planning needs.”