European Commission Proposes 30% Energy-Savings Target for 2030
The European Commission has proposed a three-pronged energy and climate strategy for European Union (EU) nations. Under the proposed strategy, EU nations would adopt goals to increase energy savings by 30 percent by 2030, reduce greenhouse gases by 40 percent and increase the amount of renewable energy consumption to 27 percent, Bloomberg reports.
The proposal is aimed at reducing European reliance on Russian fossil fuel imports. According to Bloomberg, a pricing dispute led to the cutoff of Russian natural gas deliveries to Ukraine, and while the flow of natural gas from Ukraine to Europe remains stable, the EU is taking proactive measures in the event that supply is disrupted this winter. In the wake of the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine, tensions in Ukraine have intensified, and energy security has taken on added urgency.
The energy and climate framework will require a unanimous vote in order to be finalized, and European nations are currently divided. While Germany and Denmark have called on other countries to agree on the proposed goals, a group of eastern European nations led by Poland have urged caution, seeking added assurance that nations will be able to use domestic resources such as shale and coal. Others say that the energy efficiency targets are too conservative, will actually prolong Europe’s dependence on Russian fuel imports, and will hamper innovation in energy efficiency technologies.
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