Europe and Central Asia
7 Mar 2014

Grid operators and NGOs demand EU ambition on renewables

By Communications

National governments agree that greenhouse gas emissions must go down, but disagree on the policy details. In particular they disagree on the role of renewables and energy efficiency, and whether any new targets should be binding on national governments.  What comes after the clear targets and policies for climate and energy up to 2020 in Europe is still unclear. Some key decisions will be taken in the next few weeks, with huge implications for nature conservation.

In 2011, BirdLife Europe joined Renewables Grid Initiative (RGI), a unique coalition of NGOs and progressive electricity transmission system operators (TSOs), to promote sustainable development of grid infrastructure.

“Climate change will drive mass extinctions if we don't switch to sustainable renewable energy” said Angelo Caserta, Regional Director BirdLife Europe. “This will require a lot of grid development but the new renewables and the power lines need to be delivered without harming nature, which is already in crisis”.

The RGI has just issued a joint statement supporting a 2030 climate and energy policy framework with clear, ambitious objectives for the development of renewables. They call for the establishment of an ambitious and coherent set of binding targets for 2030 for greenhouse gas emissions reductions, energy efficiency and renewable energy.

“It's essential that European leaders take notice and back an ambitious and binding framework for the coming decade, for the sake of nature and future generations” stated Ivan Scrase, Senior Policy Officer at the RSPB (BirdLife in the UK).

Industry and civil society have come to a common understanding of what is urgently needed now in relations to renewables, energy efficiency and climate. So, it's up to the EU to make the right decisions for our energy future - it matters for wildlife.  BirdLife Europe will be pressing them all the way. 

Stichting BirdLife Europe gratefully acknowledges financial support from the European Commission. All content and opinions expressed on these pages are solely those of Stichting BirdLife Europe. The European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.