European Commissioner for Energy Highlights Policies for Renewable Energy
3 April 2012: European Commissioner for Energy, Günther Oettinger, addressed the role of renewable energy in the economic recovery of Greece and for Europe at a conference on “Renewable Energy and Infrastructure Development in South Eastern Europe and Helios Project."
Commissioner Oettinger said renewables are important for energy security and supply diversity, in addition to decarbonization. Highlighting that Europe is on its way to meeting a target of a 20% share of renewable energy in European energy consumption by 2020, Oettinger underscored their energy agenda, including: decreasing dependence on imported fossil fuels; ensuring European industries are technology leaders; and creating jobs along the entire renewable energy value chain. He also emphasized the message from the recently published European 2050 Energy Roadmap, that renewable energy is a “no-regret option” for addressing climate change.
Noting the Helios project, which will deploy photovoltaic technologies in Greece, as an example, Commissioner Oettinger stressed the importance of cooperation among EU Member States, including through the regional integration of energy markets and the development of the trans-European electricity grid. He noted these would be facilitated by passage of two proposed regulations on energy infrastructure providing guidelines for trans-European networks and establishing a “Connecting Europe Facility.” [European Commission Press Release]