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WindEurope Bulletin June 2018 Foreword

CEO Foreword

Dear WindEurope Member,

Last month we launched our ‘Local Impact, Global Leadership’ toolkit. First of all, a big ‘thank you’ to everyone who helped us develop such a comprehensive supply chain map. This comes at a really critical time. We’re now in the final stretch of negotiations on the Clean Energy Package. On June 13 the European Parliament and EU Member States will meet for (they hope) the last time to agree Europe’s renewables target for 2030 and the rest of the new Renewables Directive.  EU Energy Ministers meet today to try to agree their position for this final round of negotiations.  As you know, we’ve been pushing hard for a target of at least 35%.

Our new communications toolkit helps make the case for more ambition by mapping out the local economic benefits of the wind industry in Europe. It comprises a supply chain map, a compendium of examples of how wind farms benefit communities through the local taxes they pay and through shared ownership models. Plus a set of country fact sheets, which give a great overview of the impact of our industry in some key markets.

With a higher target these benefits could be extended to even more local communities. Europe-wide, the difference between a 27% and a 35% renewables target is 132,000 jobs and €92bn worth of investments. Once the EU target is agreed national Governments will then focus on the National Energy Plans they have to submit to Brussels showing how they will contribute to the EU target.  They have to detail in these Plans what new renewables they’ll deploy up to 2030 and what they’ll do with their existing renewables that come to the end of their operational life before then.  So the National Plans will define the size and shape of our national markets up to 2030.  Engage your national government to influence them.  And use the facts and figures in the Local Impact, Global Leadership web page.

Many of you will of course have noted that the changes of Government in Spain and Italy bring new hope for renewables.  Certainly in Spain, where the new Energy Minister has already committed to undo unhelpful policies of her predecessor (and support an EU renewables target of 34-35%).  And, whilst still less clear, to some extent in Italy too: the new government favours distributed generation and solar, but onshore wind auctions should go ahead too.

Back to Brussels, and there‘ve been significant developments in EU funding for renewables and grids.  The Commission has published its proposals for the EU Budget for 2021-27 and within that amounts for R&D and energy networks.  For R&D it’s €95bn under the new “Horizon Europe” (aka “FP9”, the successor to “Horizon2020”).  €15bn of this is for Energy, Climate and Transport of which Energy would get just under half.  Energy networks get €8.7bn in the “Connecting Europe Facility” (CEF), and the “Projects of Common Interest” that make up the CEF include a dedicated renewables budget for the first time – of €875m.  These figures compare quite well to the existing EU Budget, which is encouraging given the new Brexit pressures on the EU Budget and the strong competition for the EU to spend more on security and migration.

Separately we’ve now formally launched the RE-Source Platform (at an event in Brussels on 6 June).  You may recall the RE-Source Platform is our new platform for plugging and supporting corporate renewable PPAs.  It comprises WindEurope, SolarPower Europe and corporates involved in buying and selling renewables.  The latter include Google, Microsoft, IKEA and others plus a number of renewables producers.  The Platform will lobby governments to get the right policies for PPAs and promote new business models.  Check out the website.

Finally, events.  Our Annual General Assembly and summer reception take place on 21 June in Brussels.  The latter is in the wonderful Musée du Cinquantenaire.  It should be a great do: you can register here.  And of course preparations are now in full swing for the Global Wind Summit this September in Hamburg.  We’ve some top speakers confirmed. The programme will be online in the coming days – you can find out more here.

– Giles Dickson
CEO, WindEurope

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