According to last figures released by Eurostat, in 2015, the share of energy from renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy in the EU reached 16.7%, nearly double the figure for 2004 (8.5%), the first year for which the data are available.
The share of renewables in gross final consumption of energy is one of the headline indicators of the Europe 2020 strategy. The target to be reached by 2020 for the EU is a share of 20% energy from renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy. However, renewables will continue to play a key role in helping the EU meet its energy needs beyond 2020. For this reason, EU countries have already agreed on a new EU renewable energy target of at least 27% by 2030.
Each EU Member State has its own Europe 2020 target. The national targets take into account the Member States’ different starting points, renewable energy potential and economic performance. Since 2004, the share of renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy grew significantly in all Member States. Compared with a year ago, it has increased in 22 of the 28 Member States.
Among the 28 EU Member States, eleven have already reached the level required to meet their national 2020 targets: Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Croatia, Italy, Lithuania, Hungary, Romania, Finland and Sweden. Moreover, Austria and Slovakia are about 1 percentage point from their 2020 targets.
With more than half (53.9%) of energy from renewable sources in its gross final consumption of energy, Sweden had by far in 2015 the highest share, ahead of Finland (39.3%), Latvia (37.6%), Austria (33.0%) and Denmark (30.8%). At the opposite end of the scale, the lowest proportions of renewables were registered in Luxembourg and Malta (both 5.0%), the Netherlands (5.8%), Belgium (7.9%) and the United Kingdom (8.2%), are the furthest away from their targets.