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News, Press2010

Europe's energy infrastructure is outdated

17.11.2010

“The EU pays the price for its outdated and poorly interconnected energy infrastructure” admits the European Commission in its newly published communication “Energy infrastructure priorities for 2020 and beyond”. The European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) believes the aim of the Commission’s Blueprint, to build an integrated European energy network, is crucial for Europe’s future prosperity.

“If governments do not get behind the proposal for a European grid, we will face an absurd situation in which renewable energy capacity is being built, but no adequate grid exists to deliver the 34% of renewable electricity needed by 2020 to reach the EU’s binding renewable energy targets”, warned Christian Kjaer, Chief Executive Officer of EWEA. “Without a European grid there can be no single market in electricity, and no effective competition in the electricity industry. That’s bad for consumers small and large.”         
 
“If permitting procedures for grids and infrastructure projects of European interest are not improved and better coordinated, the EU will fail to meet its energy and climate objectives”, warned Kjaer.
 
EWEA believes it is vital for the European Commission to propose new financial solutions to finance the new infrastructure, including regulated rates of return for infrastructure projects of European interest.
 
“The European Commission has presented an ambitious and farsighted vision”, said Kjaer. “The test will be whether the legislative proposals next year on financing and permitting match the scale and ambition of that vision”.

For more information contact:
Peter Sennekamp, EWEA
[email protected]
+32 2 213 18 33

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