Europe’s energy crossroads

Europe's energy policy is at a crossroads. Its grid infrastructure and many power stations are ageing and major investment decisions are being taken. Important issues are at stake; energy security, stability of supply, growing demand, the risks of nuclear power, employment opportunities for thousands and the urgent need to cut emissions and head off climate change. An answer delivering sustainable, cost-effective and secure energy is within reach: energy savings and renewable power.

An offshore windfarm in Danish waters. With the right power grid, Europe could efficiently channel large amounts of wind power south and solar power north to balance supply and demand.

An increasing number of European businesses, organisations, politicians, cities and regions subscribe to the vision of a 100 percent renewable energy supply by 2050. The Energy [R]evolution study demonstrates how Europe can achieve the necessary transition. However, its realisation relies on political decisions at European and member state level. Greenpeace is focussing on the following policy fields:

A 100 percent renewables pathway
The EU is developing an energy roadmap leading to 2050. Greenpeace urges decision-makers to strive for an efficient and fully renewable energy supply, one that would enable Europe to achieve its emissions reduction target of 80-95 percent by 2050, while supporting a flourishing economy and delivering affordable energy to its people.

A 21st century electricity system
Europe's electricity networks and market rules suit large, centralised fossil and nuclear power stations. The system is inefficient, inflexible and threatens the climate. To enable the cost-effective integration of increasing shares of renewable energy and to reap efficiency and cost benefits from market integration, Europe has to upgrade and smarten its electricity infrastructure and the way it is operated. As the EU is developing different policy initiatives and an upcoming infrastructure regulation, Greenpeace’s Battle of the Grids report demonstrates what infrastructure improvements are necessary.

 

Phasing out fossil and nuclear energy
Dirty and dangerous nuclear and fossil fuel power sources are not compatible with a safe, secure and climate-friendly energy system and should be phased out. This is why Greenpeace is working to make the nuclear industry reduce its risks and pay its own costs in full. The EU should draw lessons from the Chernobyl and Fukushima disasters, cease subsidies for nuclear energy and tailor its proposed nuclear waste directive to discourage the production of more radioactive waste while properly taking care of existing wastes.

Greenpeace opposes all fossil fuel subsidies, including those for experimental carbon capture and storage technology, a highly expensive distraction from investment into proven renewable technologies.

The latest updates

 

European Parliament fires up Europe’s energy transition

Press release | May 22, 2017 at 15:30

European Parliament proposals to increase the EU’s share of renewable energy to a minimum of 35 per cent, and to set binding targets for each EU country, are a step in the right direction, said Greenpeace.

EU could retake climate leadership under new EP plan to boost renewables

Press release | May 17, 2017 at 15:41

A new plan by key members of the European Parliament would help the EU retake global leadership on climate change, just as the US dithers on its commitments under the Paris climate agreement, said Greenpeace.

EU must stop palm oil deforestation, says European Parliament

Press release | April 4, 2017 at 13:12

The European Parliament voted in favour of a report calling on the EU to stop funding and contributing to deforestation. The report recognises the driving forces behind deforestation, in particular agricultural expansion and the production of...

Commission green light for Paks state aid ignores Orbán takeover of nuclear regulator

Press release | March 6, 2017 at 13:00

Brussels - The European Commission has given a green light to state subsidies for the construction of the Paks II nuclear power plant in Hungary. The decision is irresponsible and ignores prime minister Viktor Orbán’s takeover of Hungary’s...

Lacklustre drive for renewables threatens energy transition

Press release | February 27, 2017 at 10:08

Brussels – The energy package being discussed by EU energy ministers today could endanger the transition to renewable energy and falls well below the action needed, warned Greenpeace. The “Clean Energy for All” package is meant to be the main set...

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