Europe 2030: 40 per cent less greenhouse gases
The German Energy Transition can only succeed in the European context. That is why Germany advocates an ambitious energy and climate policy at the European level, too. Last year the EU member countries agreed on three major climate change mitigation targets for 2030: 40 – 27 – 27 is the simple formula.
The German Energy Transition can only succeed in the European context. The electricity market and grid expansion are prime examples – for instance the Leipzig power exchange is already a European trading centre, and large infrastructure projects for the electric power grid and gas network are taking connections to neighbouring countries into consideration.
At the European level, the Federal Government champions an ambitious energy and climate policy. In 2015, the main effort will be dedicated to reforming the structure of European Emissions Trading System so that it gives stronger incentives for investing in low-emission technologies. At the international level, the UN climate change conference to be held in Paris in late 2015 could be the most important event of the year: to conclude an ambitious and globally binding Convention on climate change that takes effect in 2020 at the latest – the Federal Government will be championing this cause in the context of its presidency of the G7 this year, too.
The EU has set the goalposts with the ambitious targets for 2030 adopted last year: in late October 2014, the 28 heads of state and government agreed on the energy- and climate-policy framework for 2030. Domestic Greenhouse gas emissions of the EU are to drop by at least 40 per cent compared to 1990, and the share of renewables in energy consumption is to rise to at least 27 per cent. As their third target, the EU Member States have resolved to improve their energy efficiency by at least 27 per cent by 2030. Furthermore, the EU heads of state and government have undertaken to reform the Emissions Trading System and to roll-over effective regulations for safeguarding the international competitiveness of industry.
The trio of targets enhances certainty and predictability for investment
By formulating its three priority objectives – the trio of targets comprising greenhouse gas reduction, renewable energy and energy efficiency – Europe, to quote Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy Sigmar Gabriel, is combining "ambitious climate control, growth, innovation and a powerful industrial sector and giving its industry and its businesses a clear perspective". These aims mark out an important strategic roadmap for the future line-up for European and national climate and energy policies and thus for the successful achievement of the Energy Transition.
Germany has actively supported and accompanied the decision-making process in Brussels, for example by staging the "powerupgrade 2030" event, at which high-ranking representatives of the EU Member States, the European Institutions, industry and academia met at the invitation of the State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, Rainer Baake, to discuss the advantages of defining a trio of targets on the basis of expert presentations.