A total of 11 member states have already achieved their renewable energy goals for 2020.
The national targets take into account the member states’ different starting points, renewable energy potential and economic performance.
Among the 28 member states, those that have reached the level required to meet their 2020 targets are Bulgaria, Czechia, Denmark, Estonia, Croatia, Italy, Lithuania, Hungary, Romania, Finland and Sweden.
Latvia and Austria are around one percentage point (pp) away from their goals, while on the opposite end of the scale, those furthest away from their targets are the Netherlands (7.4pp from its national 2020 objective), France (6.7pp), Ireland (5.3pp), the UK (4.8pp), Luxembourg (4.6pp), Poland (4.1pp) and Belgium (3.9pp).
Latest figures from Eurostat for 2017 also reveal the share of energy from renewable sources in the EU reached 17.5% – up from 17% in 2016.
The EU has set a goal to obtain 20% of its energy from green sources by 2020 and at least 32% by 2030.
EU Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete said: “The EU is on track to meet its 2020 renewable target, with 11 member states already above their national targets. And as Europe heads to become the world’s first major economy to go climate neutral by 2050, we will need to step up our efforts. In a climate-neutral Europe, power generation should be fully decarbonised by 2050, more than 80% of the EU’s electricity will be produced by renewable energy sources.
“To get there, the momentum created by renewables for competitiveness, growth and jobs in Europe must continue.”
With more than half (54.5%) of its energy coming from renewables, Sweden had by far the highest share in 2017, ahead of Finland (41%), Latvia (39%), Denmark (35.8%) and Austria (32.6%).
The lowest proportion of renewables were registered in Luxembourg (6.4%), the Netherlands (6.6%) and Malta (7.2%).