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Don’t undermine support for wind power, trade body warns EU

A warning not to undermine EU support for renewables has been sounded by a wind energy trade body in a letter to a French minister.

The European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) has expressed its concern about a proposed ‘review clause’


in the Renewable Energy Directive, and underlined the importance of priority grid access for renewables in an open letter to French Energy Minister Jean-Louis Borloo.

A ‘review clause’ is currently being debated in Council as part of the Renewable Energy Directive. The clause would introduce a review, in 2014, of whether the flexibility mechanisms were ensuring that the Member States were meeting their targets. The EWEA says this could undermine stable national support mechanisms, market stability and investor certainty, as well as discourage Member States from ensuring adequate domestic investments before the results of such a review were known.

“EWEA strongly opposes a review clause evaluating the implementation of the Directive, in particular with regard to whether the flexibility mechanisms are ensuring that Member States reach their national targets,” says the letter.

“Member States will fulfil the majority of their national targets on the basis of domestic effort, not flexibility mechanisms. Such a review clause:

• would introduce a disincentive for Member States to ensure adequate domestic investments in renewables, relying instead on a favourable outcome of any review;
• would undermine investor certainty and jeopardise investments sufficient to achieve the national targets;
• would fail to provide a stable EU legislative framework capable of providing a basis for attracting investment in wind energy;
• would introduce critical uncertainty in the compliance phase of the Directive, rather than underpin stable long term national support mechanisms (be they certificate, premium or feed-in models).”


The EWEA also points out that wind energy contributes to all three key objectives of the EU’s energy policy, namely reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving the competitiveness of Europe and ensuring security of supply.