Renewable energy sees increasing share in EU heating, cooling
BAKU, Azerbaijan, Feb.11
By Leman Zeynalova - Trend:
In 2018, renewable energy accounted for 21 percent of the total energy used for heating and cooling in the European Union (EU), Trend reports citing Eurostat.
“This share has increased steadily since the beginning of the data collection in 2004, when the share was 12 percent. Increases in industry, services and households have all contributed to the growth in renewable energy used for heating and cooling,” reads the report provided by Eurostat.
Reportedly, Sweden stood out among EU Member States with almost two thirds (65 percent) of the energy used for heating and cooling in 2018 stemming from renewable sources.
“More than half of the energy used for heating and cooling came from renewable energy sources in Latvia (56 percent), Finland (55 percent) and Estonia (54 percent). In contrast, renewable sources contributed the least to heating and cooling in Ireland and the Netherlands (both 6 percent), Belgium (8 percent) and Luxembourg (9 percent).”
Becoming the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050 is the objective behind the European Green Deal (COM(2019) 640 final), the most ambitious package of measures that should enable European citizens and businesses to benefit from sustainable green transition.
The Green Deal is an integral part of the European Commission’s strategy to implement the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda and the sustainable development goals, and the other priorities. As part of the Green Deal, the Commission will refocus the European Semester process of macroeconomic coordination to integrate the United Nations’ sustainable development goals, to put sustainability and the well-being of citizens at the centre of economic policy, and the sustainable development goals at the heart of the EU’s policymaking and action.
Measures accompanied with an initial roadmap of key policies range from ambitiously cutting emissions, to investing in cutting-edge research and innovation, to preserving Europe’s natural environment. Above all, the European Green Deal sets a path for a transition that is just and socially fair. It is designed in such a way as to leave no individual or region behind in the great transformation ahead.
The growth of renewable energy sources may also stimulate employment in the EU, through the creation of jobs in new ‘green’ technologies.
Wind energy is the renewable energy technology expected to provide the largest contribution to the EU renewable energy targets for 2020 and beyond.
By 2020, the total installed wind energy capacity could reach 210 GW, that equals a capacity to supply 14 percent of electricity demand, and by 2030 it could reach 350 GW, supplying up to 24% of the electricity demand.
Installed wind power capacity in the EU is currently around 140 GW. Approximately 127 GW of the capacity is onshore and just over 13 GW is offshore.
The cost of onshore wind power is already competitive with other sources of electricity in a number of countries.
Offshore wind represents a significant future opportunity: resources are stable, abundant and public acceptance is higher. Governments and investors are more carefully investing in offshore projects, where major cost reductions are needed to achieve competitiveness.
Europe is the global leader in offshore wind. This needs to be sustained where worldwide players such as the USA, China, Korea and Japan have increased their support to boost their offshore industry.
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