The EU takes the leading role in the field of political initiatives in the wind energy sector. Every year the EU proposes new initiatives, recommendations and legally binding political mechanisms which, it is hoped, will enable the long-term development of the wind energy sector and the maintenance of energy/environmental security.
The 2009 EU Renewable Energy Directive is a breakthrough piece of legislation that will turn Europe into the leader of the energy revolution the world needs. The EU has, for the first time, an overall 20 percent renewable energy target for 2020, and each of the Member States has its own legally binding target for the same year.
It should be noted that the 20 percent EU target is not legally enforceable, which is why the Commission proposed differentiated individual national targets.
The Member States are given an ‘indicative trajectory’ to follow in the run-up to 2020. By 2011-12, they should be 20 percent of the way towards the target (compared to 2005); by 2013-14, 30 percent; by 2015-16, 45 percent and by 2017-18 65 percent.
The current situation at the national level is determined by a fairly low degree of support for renewable energy from the national authorities. The decentralization of the energy sector, managing the interests of monopolies, the development of renewable energy legislation and the simplification of bureaucratic procedures would be the main tools for solving the existing problems.
The European Commission proposed a renewables target of 27 percent by 2030. This is despite its own figures which show that setting a 30 percent renewables target would create over 560,000 more jobs in Europe and boost economic growth while saving billions on imported fossil fuel and health costs. An even higher target would have an even greater impact.