London, England — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 07 March 2011 – Latest figures on the progress of renewable energy in the European Union (EU) show that its 2020 renewable energy policy goals are likely to be met and exceeded, if member states fully implement their national renewable energy action plans, and if financing instruments are improved.
Revealing this in a statement issued here, the European Commission (EC) stressed the need for further co-operation between member states, reinforcing the convergence of support schemes; and for better integration of renewable energy into the single European market to ensure that renewable technologies became economically competitive as soon as possible.
The commission statement outlined three mechanisms to favour such cooperation:
Statistical transfers where one member state with a surplus of renewable energy can transfer it statistically to another state, whose renewable energy sources may be more expensive;
Joint projects in which a new renewable energy project in one member state can be co-financed by another, and energy production shared statistically between the two;
Joint support schemes in which two or more member states agree to harmonise all or part of their support schemes.
According to their national renewable energy action plans, Italy and Luxembourg already both expect to use these mechanisms to help develop renewable energy in another member state and count it towards their own domestic targets.
Nine countries (the Czech Republic, Germany, Spain, Lithuania, Hungary, Austria, Poland, Slovenia, and Sweden) currently expect to exceed their 2020 targets, and could therefore have a surplus available.
The commission says that in 2014 it plans to assess the effective functioning of the co-operation mechanisms. Nonetheless, preliminary estimates indicate that across the economic bloc such measures could lead to 10 billion Euro in annual savings.