EU starts ball rolling on 2030 green goals

May 23, 2013 at 7:37 AM

BRUSSELS, May 23 (UPI) -- The European Union needs to start looking at how to provide incentives to boost clean energy measures beyond 2020 targets, a lawmaker said.

The European Parliament passed a non-binding resolution by a vote of 465-177, with 46 abstentions, that calls for a bloc-wide system to promote renewable energy with 2030 targets in mind.

German lawmaker Herbert Reul, who helped pushed the measure through Parliament, said the measure laid the groundwork for future debates over energy policies in the European Union.

"Renewable energy support needs to be seen from an EU perspective," he said in a floor statement. "We need to talk about how we are going to shape our climate policy after 2020 overall."

Lawmakers in the European Parliament backed a measure to increase the share of renewables by 2030 but a proposal to set that target at 40-45 percent was rejected.

In 2009, the European Union set a goal of getting 20 percent of its energy needs through renewable sources by 2020. An EU progress report on 2020 targets said the financial crisis in the eurozone was slowing progress on the reforms.

European Energy Commission Guenther Oettinger said the European Union needs to work on 2030 climate and energy goals as it addresses the long-term efforts of cutting emissions as much as 95 percent by 2050.

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