Published in the annual update of the EREC’s “Keep on Track” project, the findings rank the UK as 25th out of 27 member states for renewables contribution.

In addition, preliminary figures from the Renewable Energy Association (REA), show that the UK is the only Member State in the project which did not achieve its first interim target under the directive by the end of 2011 (4.04% for 2011 to 2012).

While the EREC expects Austria, Italy and Sweden to meet their 2020 targets, it has “serious doubts” as to whether Bulgaria, Germany, Greece and Portugal will be able to meet theirs and says it expects Belgium, Poland, Spain and the UK to miss their targets altogether.

EREC President Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes said: “It’s plain sailing for the 21 member states who have already achieved their 2012 targets in 2011.

“However, there are worrying signs on the horizon as current growth rates are insufficient to meet the 2020 targets. EU Member States should create and implement predictable and stable legislative frameworks for renewable energy sources.”

Following the results, the REA, which provides the EREC with data for the UK, called on the Government to confirm its commitment to achieving the UK’s 2020 target and “to end the mixed policy signals that have dominated the airwaves in recent times.”

REA chief executive Gaynor Hartnell said: “While we appear to have narrowly missed the interim target, prospects for getting on track to meet 15% in 2020 seem remote.”

“The effect of a steep drop in lending decisions taken in recent years will manifest itself, there will inevitably be a hiatus with the closure of the Renewables Obligation and the Government seems to have gone lukewarm on renewable heat. The earlier than anticipated publication of strike prices is welcome but more work needs to be done to build investor confidence,” added Hartnell

Conor McGlone

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