Energy industry needs post-2020 targets set soon
The European Commission’s ‘roadmap to a low-carbon economy in 2050’ may well be “setting out the technical issues rather than demanding political decisions” as you reported (“Mapping out a cleaner tomorrow”, 17-23 February), but it will be of no value unless it is followed by political decisions.
The main pillars of the EU’s energy and climate policies – its targets for emissions reduction, renewable energy and energy efficiency – all run out in 2020. We are facing an energy policy vacuum in 2021. But power plant investment decisions taken today will still affect the EU’s energy mix in 30 years’ time, and will have a major impact on achieving the EU’s commitment – and environmental imperative – to reduce emissions by 80%-95% by 2050.
It is no use our politicians waiting until the end of the decade to decide what replaces those targets. Investors need certainty about the EU’s policies well beyond 2020 if they are to make the right investments. I urge José Manuel Barroso, the Commission’s president, and Connie Hedegaard and Günther Oettinger, the commissioners for climate action and energy, to set out the post-2020 energy-policy framework – following the 2050 roadmap – within the lifetime of the current Commission and European Parliament.
Chief executive officer, European Wind Energy Association