EREF acts as important initiator for ideas and solutions on most important issues facing renewable energies today. EREF monitors and contributes to debates surrounding key issues. All with the aim of fostering the energy transition in Europe towards a system based around renewable's.
Promoting an EU-wide network of key contacts for renewables
The renewables Networking Platform (RNP) aims at connecting the relevant European, national, regional and local actors to facilitate the development of sound policies which ensure that the minimum 32% renewables target for 2030 is met while monitoring best practices and obstacles in policies at national and sub-national levels.
EREF’s principle role within the RNP is to act as information hub between national and European levels. EREF is the main contact point for national renewable energy associations of EU Member States and relevant EU institutions and Brussels-based stakeholders.
EREF collects and analyses information on EU policy and legislation developments with an impact on renewable energy development. It disseminates this news to national focal points and in return collects information from them on country-specific developments, opportunities, barriers and requests to European decision-makers which it then forwards to decision-makers at EU level.
Highlighting the advantages of renewable energy prosumers
As member of the EU Alliance on Community Power, EREF promotes the development of citizen and community ownership of energy in the urgent transformation towards a 100% renewable energy system by providing legal and political support to renewable energy communities and cooperatives in EU Member States.
EREF is also communication and dissemination partner of the PV-Prosumers4Grid (PVP4Grid), an EU-funded project involving twelve partners from various European countries.
The main objective of PVP4Grid is to increase the market share and market value of PV by enabling consumers to become PV prosumers in a system-friendly manner. PVP4Grid aims at a better power system integration of PV with a focus on market integration. New management and business models to combine PV, storage, flexible demand and other technologies into a commercially viable product, will be assessed, improved, implemented and evaluated. The PVP4Grid project is aligned to the EU-funded projects EU Heroes and iDistributedPV. EU Heroes tackles barriers to the development of community owned solar PV projects. iDistributedPV develops affordable integrated solutions to enhance the penetration of distributed solar PV.
EREF contributes to the Small is Beautiful campaign which supports small-scale renewable installations and co-generation facilities in Europe. More than 15 partners, including renewable energy associations, mayors of cities, cooperatives, property owners and construction associations, have joined the campaign to secure a positive framework for small-scale installations across Europe.
Decarbonised Heating and Cooling
Decarb Europe is a multichannel media campaign initiated by the European Copper Institute (ECI) with the support of twenty industry associations and two media partners. The goal is to engage decision makers in policy and industry with cost-effective technical solutions that each reduce European GHG emissions by 100 to 500 million tonnes per year.
Publishing of the National Energy and Climate Plans
As required under the Governance Regulation, each country must finalise and publish their National Energy and Climate Plans by the end of 2019 to outline their climate and energy goals, policies and measures from 2021 to 2030.
The plans should explain what measures a Member State will take in order to contribute to the EU’s 2030 targets for energy efficiency, renewable energy and greenhouse gas emissions reductions and phasing-out of fossil fuels, and at the same time quantify the investments needed to reach these objectives.
Ensuring Support for Renewable Energy Development
As the State Aid Guidelines for Renewable Energy and Environmental Protection are nearing the end of their validity in 2020, the Commission is conducting a Fitness Check of these rules in order to verify whether they are still fit for purpose between 2020 and 2030.
The outcome of this process will serve as a basis for the Commission to decide on whether or not to prolong the current rules or whether to reform them entirely.
Debate on an EU Carbon Tax
The adoption of a Carbon tax (or CO2 price) has proven to be an effective means of internalising the costs of polluting within the industries which do so the most. A debate exists as to whether the European countries should adopt an EU-wide Carbon tax in order to combat greenhouse gas emissions.
EREF is closely following this debate as it strongly believes that the adoption of such a tax is key in making sure that the activities which emit the most pay their fair share in the energy transition.
Negotiation of the EU Long-term Decarbonisation Strategy for 2050
On 28 November 2018, the Commission presented its strategic long-term vision for a prosperous, modern, competitive and climate-neutral economy by 2050.
The strategy shows how Europe can lead the way to climate neutrality by investing into realistic technological solutions, empowering citizens, and aligning action in key areas such as industrial policy, finance, or research – while ensuring social fairness for a just transition.
Following the invitations by the European Parliament and the European Council, the Commission's vision for a climate-neutral future covers nearly all EU policies and is in line with the Paris Agreement objective to keep the global temperature increase to well below 2°C and pursue efforts to keep it to 1.5°C
The exact text of the Strategy is currently being debated in the European Council with a view to having it completed by early 2020 for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as required by the Paris Agreement.