Friends of the Earth Scotland today (Thursday 15 December 2011) responded to the release by the European Commission (EC) of its Energy Roadmap 2050 document.

The European Union (EU) has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 80-95% below 1990 levels by 2050. The EC’s Energy Roadmap 2050 analyses a set of possible post-2020 scenarios on how that objective might be achieved.

The Energy Roadmap 2050 states that the share of renewable technologies in total energy use could increase by 2050 to be between 55% and 97%. In the higher renewables scenario, nuclear power and fossil fuels are largely done away with and only account for under 1.5% and 1% respectively in total energy use.

Stan Blackley, Chief Executive of Friends of the Earth Scotland, said:

“The Energy Roadmap 2050 shows that immediate and upfront investment in low carbon and renewable energy technologies, matched by investment in energy efficiency and demand reduction measures, will reduce the amount of energy required and wasted in Europe, and will help to reduce Europe’s dependency on fossil fuel imports, making the European economy more resilient to fluctuating energy prices.

“The Roadmap also shows that producing Europe’s energy from clean, safe, renewable sources will not cost taxpayers any more than doing so using dirty and dangerous sources such as coal and nuclear power. It also shows that a modern energy system for Europe can rely on increased use of renewable technologies and improved energy efficiency, and that coal and nuclear power can be largely done away with over the coming few decades.

“Friends of the Earth Scotland would like to see concerted effort from the European Parliament and EU Governments to commit to binding targets for the development, establishment and use of renewable technologies by 2030 as part of the journey to the stated 2050 destination.

“A report released today by the influential Committee on Climate Change shows that household energy bill increases in the UK are being driven by the rising cost of wholesale gas and not the cost of establishing renewable energy technologies, and it is clear that this scenario is replicated throughout Europe.

“Making the transition to low carbon and renewable technologies, and backing this up with a concerted effort to improve energy efficiency and reduce energy demand, will not only help the EU meet its ambitious greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets, but it will also improve Europe’s energy-security and stabilise energy prices.”

ENDS

For media enquiries, please contact: Per Fischer, Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland
 t: 0131 243 2719

Notes to Editors

1. More information on the European Commission’s Energy Roadmap 2050 can be found at:
http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=MEMO/11/914

2. The Committee on Climate Change report: “Household energy bills – impacts of meeting carbon budgets” is available to download from: www.theccc.org.uk/reports/household-energy-bills

3. Friends of the Earth Scotland is * Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation * An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland * Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups – covering every continent.
www.foe-scotland.org.uk