EU hits a high in wind farm construction, yet falls short of the green energy targets set for 2030, sparking a push for more action.
European Union nations hit a record stride in wind power development last year, installing 17 gigawatts of new wind farms, the highest annual addition yet. However, despite this achievement, the bloc is falling short of its ambitious renewable energy goals, according to industry data released on Friday.
This significant surge in wind power capacity reflects Europe's accelerating shift towards renewable energy, but the progress is still not sufficient. To meet the EU's 2030 renewable energy targets, an annual addition of at least 37GW is necessary, a benchmark set by Brussels' own analysis.
However, there's a glimmer of hope, as Giles Dickson, the CEO of WindEurope, noted improvements in the permitting process, thanks to new EU regulations aimed at reducing wait times. "Things were very bad indeed on the permitting. Now they are improving significantly," Dickson told Reuters. He expressed optimism about the future, anticipating a sustained increase in new wind installations.
Wind power played a pivotal role in the EU's energy mix last year, generating 19% of the bloc's electricity and contributing to the 44% of total power derived from renewable sources, as reported by the Fraunhofer Institute.
In a proactive move to further bolster the wind sector, the European Commission unveiled a comprehensive package of measures last October. These initiatives include enhanced financial backing for wind industry suppliers via the European Investment Bank and modifications to green energy auctions designed to benefit local manufacturers. This concerted effort underscores the EU's commitment to not only sustain but also accelerate its transition to a cleaner, renewable energy-powered future.
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