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EWEA tells GasNaturally event 100% renewables is wind industry’s long-term goal

10.12.2015

A world 100% powered by renewable energy is the wind industry’s long-term objective, EWEA’s Chief Executive Officer told a GasNaturally event at COP21.

Wind power can already serve 10% of electricity consumption in the EU with over 130GW of installed capacity across the region. In 2014, wind energy installed more than gas and coal combined. Speaking at a side event organised by the gas industry, Dickson said that with ambitious policies that aim high, wind energy could meet as much as 28% of Europe’s electricity needs by 2030. Such a scenario would be dependent on the EU meeting its climate and energy targets, overhauling the ETS and reforming electricity market design in Europe.

On the question of the future power mix, Dickson said that a system in which wind is balanced solely by gas “is a myth”. He added: “Back up of a single technology does not exist in power systems. Balancing wind is achieved by aggregating power output of wind farms over large geographical areas, optimising the use of the existing power fleet, using demand response and storage.”

Dickson made the point that the functioning of the market could be improved by moving power trading closer to real time. Aligning the trade in system services and wholesale power markets would help to ensure efficient price signals. He added that integration costs for wind energy are a consequence of the existing structure of power systems, rather than an unavoidable feature.

He said: “Ultimately, the weight of this market design rests with policymakers in Brussels and in the Member States. Completion of the Internal Energy Market is essential and the sooner that happens the more efficient, sustainable and profitable Europe's energy system will be.”

Panelists agreed on the need to have a wholesale market that provides a price signal for investments on less polluting technologies as well as the need for a significant price on carbon. Structural reform of the Emissions Trading System and European targets to reduce emissions were also highlighted as instruments to achieve such goals.

Other participants on the panel included Ian Duncan, Member of the European Parliament, Francois-Regis Mouton, Chairman of GasNaturally and Oliver Schafer, President of Solar Power Europe.

From Twitter:

EWEA's Giles Dickson tells @GasNaturally event that gas alone balancing #windenergy "is a myth" pic.twitter.com/7fh81ZCe0C

— EWEA (@EWEA) December 8, 2015

EWEA CEO: there is no instance of one technology balancing another. The whole system is responsible for balancing

— EWEA (@EWEA) December 8, 2015

Giles Dickson says EWEA's goal is 100% renewables over the long term. #COP21 @GasNaturally event #EnergyUnion pic.twitter.com/KtxkBUZWyj

— EWEA (@EWEA) December 8, 2015

Some countries making "quantum leap" on #renewables in INDCs for #COP21 particularly in emerging markets pic.twitter.com/dgnddLTzK3

— EWEA (@EWEA) December 8, 2015

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