EU maps out energy to 2050

17th January 2012

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Energy ,
  • EU ,
  • Management/saving ,
  • Renewable ,
  • Generation



European Commission roadmap plans to almost completely decarbonise energy generation to achieve 80% emissions cuts by 2050.

The commission’s Energy roadmap 2050 examines how EU member states can maintain a stable and affordable energy supply and lower carbon emissions, and concludes that decarbonisation is not only possible but should not cost more than taking no action at all.

It contains seven scenarios combining different mixes of renewable energy, nuclear power and fossil fuels with carbon capture and storage (CCS) and energy efficiency.

Irrespective of the energy mix chosen, there are a number of common elements in all the decarbonisation scenarios, including a growing demand for renewable energy and the crucial role of energy efficiency.

All the scenarios forecast that 30% of energy consumption by 2030 will be from renewables, rising to between 55%–75% by the middle of the century.

Energy commissioner Günther Oettinger said that he expects binding renewable-energy targets beyond 2020 to be in place by 2014.

The roadmap also highlights the need to reduce energy consumption by 2050 by a minimum of 32%, compared with the peak in 2005/06, while all scenarios show electricity will have to play a much greater role than now, almost doubling its share in final energy demand to 36–39% over the next 40 years.

The commission says the map will help member states make the required energy choices and create a stable business climate for private investment.

But the PRIMES energy model used by the commission to reach its conclusions has been criticised by the renewables industry.

“There are astounding assumptions in all scenarios such as oil prices dropping from over $100 per barrel today to $70 per barrel in 2050; offshore wind costing the same in 2050 as today; declining nuclear costs, and no gas or CCS infrastructure being needed in the next 40 years,” said Christian Kjaer, chief executive at the European Wind Energy Association.

“Despite these attempts to prefabricate the results, the scenarios confirm that a renewable-energy future comes at no higher energy cost to Europe. A high renewables and efficiency scenario would be the cheapest.”


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

Latest environmental legislation update

Groundbreaking legislation on air and noise pollution and measures to tackle growing concerns over disposable vapes provide the focus for Neil Howe’s environmental legislation update

6th June 2024

Read more

One in five UK food businesses are not prepared for EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) coming into force in December, a new survey has uncovered.

16th May 2024

Read more

Regulatory gaps between the EU and UK are beginning to appear, warns Neil Howe in this edition’s environmental legislation round-up

4th April 2024

Read more

Dr Julie Riggs issues a call to arms to tackle a modern-day human tragedy

15th March 2024

Read more

The UK’s new biodiversity net gain (BNG) requirements could create 15,000 hectares of woodlands, heath, grasslands, and wetlands and absorb 650,000 tonnes of carbon each year.

13th March 2024

Read more

Campaign group Wild Justice has accused the UK government of trying to relax pollution rules for housebuilders “through the backdoor”.

14th February 2024

Read more

Digital tracking, packaging data delays and new collections provide a waste focus for this edition’s environmental round-up by legislation expert Neil Howe

28th November 2023

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close