The European Union reached a political agreement on Thursday on an ambitious goal to expand renewable energy use by 2030, a key step in its plan to combat climate change and abandon fossil fuels in Russia, Reuters reported.
The agreement calls for an 11.7% reduction in final energy consumption across the EU by 2030, which MEPs say will help combat climate change and reduce Europe’s use of Russian fossil fuels.
In addition, European Parliament member Marcus Piper tweeted that EU countries and the European Parliament agreed that by 2030, the 27 EU member states will get 42.5% of their energy from renewable sources such as wind and solar, compared to 32% today.
To achieve this goal, countries will need to retrofit millions of leaky buildings to reduce energy waste. Since most European buildings are heated with fossil fuels, this policy is crucial to the EU’s fight against climate change.
Negotiators agreed that by 2030, end users in the region, such as homes and factories, should consume 11.7% less energy than expected. But the deal falls short of the 13% target proposed by the European Commission last year, which was intended to help countries move away from Russian fossil fuels more quickly.
The target will be legally binding. Countries will set their own non-mandatory national targets, but if they don’t add up to the 11.7% goal, the European Commission will amend them.
From 2024 to 2030, countries must reduce their final energy consumption by an average of 1.49% per year. Countries must also accelerate the rate of retrofitting of public buildings by at least 3% of the total area of public buildings each year.
The agreement will be submitted to the European Parliament and EU countries for a final vote, which is usually a pro forma procedure that does not make any changes to the agreement.