A three-day conference on renewable energies organised by the European Renewable Energy Council and the Federal Environment Ministry marks the launch of Energy Week. Over 800 participants from the political, economic and scientific sectors are expected to attend this conference. The aim is to discuss the new role of renewable energies in Europe’s future energy supply and to highlight ways in which to achieve the rapid expansion of renewables in the EU by 2020.
“The key to understanding the significance renewable energies must and will have in future lies in an integrated approach of climate protection and energy policy. This is precisely what the European Commission presented in the framework of its energy package on 10 January 2007” noted Minister Gabriel. In view of the upcoming challenges resulting from globally increasing energy demand and continuously high oil and gas prices, increasing instability in certain regions of the world and the impacts of climate change, the European Union must resolutely support the expansion of renewable energies, he continued.
“With our EU Presidency in the first half of this year, Germany has the opportunity to lay the foundations for a modern and sustainable European energy supply”, emphasised the Minister. He called on the energy and environment ministers of the Member States to support the energy package presented by the European Commission on 10 January and the proposals it contains for an ambitious “action plan”, to enable the package to be adopted by the European Council at the spring summit on 8/9 March.
The European Commission’s energy package prescribes for the year 2020 a binding EU overall target of a 20% renewables share in primary energy consumption and a binding minimum target of a 10% share for biofuels. Furthermore, the European Commission proposes implementing the EU overall target in binding national targets, taking into account different national framework conditions. It also proposes a new, joint, cross-sectoral legislative framework for the promotion and use of renewable energies in all sectors, i.e. the electricity, heating/cooling and transport sectors.