8 May 2020
WindEurope Bulletin CEO Foreword on Hamburg postponement and a wind-powered European recovery plan
Dear WindEurope Member,
We are living in extraordinary times. And the recovery from this pandemic will require extraordinary measures. Wind energy is already doing its part in getting Europe through this crisis. Normal life may be on pause, but the wind keeps blowing. Our turbines keep turning. And our industry keeps delivering clean electricity to our homes, hospitals, businesses and transport networks. You may have seen our new video on that, here’s the link – it’s an important message, so please do share it widely.
Yesterday we announced the decision to postpone WindEnergy Hamburg, our joint event with Hamburg Messe und Congress, until 1-4 December. We are pleased that this gathering, the world’s largest wind energy event, will still go ahead this year. The big ambitions of the EU Green Deal, and the economic recovery plans Europe is putting in place now, make 2020 a pivotal year for the energy transition. The further expansion of wind energy is central to the Green Deal and will deliver jobs and investments needed for recovery. Meeting in Hamburg, a key hub for our industry and when Germany has the Presidency of the EU, will be the perfect time and place to show that the wind industry is ready to deliver
17 out of 27 EU Member States have made a strongly-worded appeal to the EU to keep the climate crisis high on the agenda when developing recovery plans to address the impacts of COVID-19. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen strongly supports this and sees the Green Deal as the motor of economic recovery. And at WindEurope we have been pulling out all the stops to get the message out on this over the recent weeks. On 20 April the CEOs of our 22 board member companies had a 90-minute videoconference with European Commission Executive Vice-President in charge of the European Green Deal Frans Timmermans, and Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson. They discussed the impacts of the COVID-19 crisis, our challenges with permitting, electrification and system integration, and supply chain competitiveness. The Commission were very receptive to our messages and asked us to define the low-hanging fruit of how they can best support us to deliver investments and generate jobs and growth in the coming 12-18 months.
The Commission is expected to announce its plans for boosting economy recovery this month. It looks like the stimulus package will be very good news for our industry. But let’s be frank. It is no use receiving lots of money for wind projects if wind farms are difficult to build. Permitting is still a huge issue for our industry. We have stressed that to the Commission. A precondition for a smart green recovery is that governments sort out their permitting rules. We are proposing very practical measures to the European Commission to lean on Member States and address this challenge.
As you know, our Tech Workshop on Resource Assessment & Analysis of Operating Wind Farms has been moved fully online and will take place on the 8-11 June. You can see the complete programme for that here.
Finally, I hope this message finds you and yours well. Do keep letting us know if there are any issues we can help you with. Our staff remain at your full disposal.
– Giles Dickson
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