Improved integration of energy markets and more investment are both needed if the European Union is to hit its new 2030 renewable energy targets, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA)
In a review of EU energy policy, 'Energy Policies of IEA Countries: European Union – 2014', the IEA made a number of policy recommendations on EU targets, including more investment in low carbon technologies and a commitment to improve the integration of energy markets across the bloc.
This October, the European Council agreed to binding 27% renewable energy targets and at least 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.
Rapid renewable energy deployment is expected thanks to the latest EU energy targets for 2030, however, the IEA found that there are still legal issues and market rules required to implement the goals.
This target will be delivered collectively by the EU, with all nember states involved in the effort.
The IEA praised the EU on leadership and carbon reduction, but said wholesale market reforms were still in need of balance.
“A strong ‘Energy Union’ is needed to achieve the EU 2030 goals. But let’s be clear: such a union should not represent a buyer’s cartel. Rather, it should feature an integrated energy market and effective climate and energy policies,” said IEA executive director, Maria van der Hoeven.
The IEA report also recommended reforming the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) with more investment in renewable energy, and that interconnections should include all of Europe, not just western and northern Europe.
“To move towards an Energy Union, the EU must better pool its resources within the internal energy market to enhance both energy security and the competitiveness of its industry,” van der Hoeven added.