Published: Thu, 14 June 2018
Seán Kelly MEP has secured an agreement during overnight negotiations, which sets a 32 percent binding renewable energy target for the EU by 2030. Mr Kelly led negotiations on the revised Renewable Energy Directive (REDII) for the European People’s Party, achieving this significant deal during negotiations between the co-legislators, at European Parliament and Council, which ended at 4am this morning.
“I am delighted that we have achieved an agreement on a binding EU target of 32pc for renewable energy by 2030. This will help us to provide secure, affordable and climate-friendly energy. Member States will now have an opportunity to submit national plans outlining how they are going to meet these new targets – to be met collectively by the EU.
“With the Paris Agreement in place, combined with the evidence that has since been presented about the falling costs of renewable energy, it is clear that the Council and Commission’s proposed 27pc target was outdated,” said Mr Kelly, Leader of the Fine Gael Delegation in the European Parliament.
The Ireland South MEP has often highlighted the importance of moving away from our dependence on fossil or nuclear energy and towards a greater renewable energy mix. The transport sector, which accounts for nearly a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions in the EU, has huge potential to become a more environmentally friendly sector and was a priority for Mr Kelly during the negotiations:
“Member States will now aim for a target of 14 percent renewable energy in the transport sector, which includes incentives for electric vehicles and advanced biofuels, and indeed the securing of investments already made in crop based biofuels which had been thrown into uncertainty following the Commission’s proposed phase out. Our agreement puts an obligation on Member States to get levels of advanced bio-fuels in the mix to 0.2 percent in 2022, 1 percent in 2025 and 3.5 percent in 2030
“Additionally, the agreement will empower consumers to fully participate in the switch to renewables, both through generating and selling their own electricity, for which Member States will be obliged to support, and by participating in Renewable Energy Communities, which is designed to put the ownership and control of wind farms, for example, into the hands of the local population.
“This will support the energy transition from fossil fuels to renewables and, crucially, it will go hand-in-hand with maintaining EU competitiveness and growth,” added Mr Kelly, a Member of the Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy.
These and other targets under the Directive will be reviewed in 2023 to ascertain if the Union can further boost its renewable energy ambitions and could be adjusted upwards at that time.