MEPs call for more ambition in future clean energy laws

Energy transition

Today the European Parliament adopted its position on three legislative proposals under the Clean Energy Package, namely the revisions of the Renewable Energy Directive and the Energy Efficiency Directive, and the new Governance Regulation, which will guide the EU’s zero-carbon transition in the coming decade and beyond.

MEPs raised the ambition of the future clean energy laws, by voting in favour of increasing the EU’s 2030 renewable energy and energy efficiency targets to at least 35 percent and raising its long-term target to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 at the latest.

In reaction to the results of the vote, Wendel Trio, Director of Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe said:

“The decision to increase the clearly inadequate EU energy targets and the long-term climate objective is a step in the right direction. With this position the European Parliament clearly challenges EU governments that have opted for far less ambitious proposals.

However, these targets still fall short of what is needed to meet the long term goals of the Paris Agreement. The EU will need to ratchet up the ambition to levels that match the seriousness of the climate change threat in the nearest future, latest by 2020.

If the EU is serious about its commitments made in Paris, the European Parliament position should be seen as the minimum effort to be done. We call on the Parliament’s negotiators to stand their ground in the upcoming negotiations with the Council and the Commission.”

While calling for higher ambition, the Parliament also strengthened the annual energy savings obligation, which requires EU countries to save 1.5% of energy sold to consumers every year, by eliminating some of the loopholes allowed in the current legislation.

However, it failed to support national binding targets for renewable energy and energy efficiency, which would help ensure that the overall EU renewable energy and energy efficiency targets are met.

It has also failed to introduce meaningful safeguards for forest biomass use, undermining the role sustainable bioenergy has to play in our transition to 100% renewables.



Wendel Trio, CAN Europe Director,, +32 473 170 887

Ania Drazkiewicz, CAN Europe Head of Communications,, +32 494 525 738


[1] CAN Europe press statement on Energy Ministers’ position on the revision of the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) adopted in June:

[2] CAN Europe press statement on Energy Ministers’ position on the revision of the Renewable Energy Directive, the Governance Regulation and the Market Design Regulation adopted in December:

[3] According to the Talanoa Dialogue roadmap adopted at the UN Climate Summit COP23 last year, all countries including EU member states need to bridge the gap between what they have committed to do and what is needed to keep temperature rise to safe levels, by scaling up their 2030 climate pledges following the next UN Climate Summit in 2018:

Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe is Europe’s largest coalition working on climate and energy issues. With over 140 member organisations in more than 30 European countries – representing over 44 million citizens – CAN Europe works to prevent dangerous climate change and promote sustainable climate and energy policy in Europe.


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