A European Union for Renewable Energy – Policy Options for Better Grids and Support Schemes
The report argues for an enhanced European cooperation in order to facilitate the shift towards renewable energy sources. More coordination at the European level would increase security of supply, reduce costs, enhance innovation and foster the competitiveness of the European economy. To reach the goal of 100% renewables by 2050 the renewable energy potential in Europe should be pooled and thus allow for an optimal use of renewables independent from national borders. The report therefore calls for more coordination of energy mix choices at a European level. Given that there is currently no agreement between all Member States on a 100% renewable energy target, the report proposes enhanced cooperation and the connection of frontrunner countries – such as Germany, Austria and Scandinavian Member States – in macro-regions.
There is a strong claim for the transformation of the energy market: future market structures should be characterised by the generation of variable renewable energy sources and the balancing solutions that this will require; rather than just integrating renewables into the fossil-based market structures. Additionally, it is necessary to agree upon binding targets for renewable energy in order to provide a high level of investment security. The report therefore proposes a Europe-wide binding target of at least 45% renewables for the energy sector by 2030. In order to improve grid planning and to increase public acceptance the report calls for a more transparent, inclusive and participative grid planning process which takes into account best practices from European and national levels.