On 15 May 2017, EurObserv’ER released the report “State of Renewable energies in Europe 2016”. Main findings of this report include: gross final energy consumption in the EU-28 increased by 2.2% between 2014 and 2015 (from 1,097.7 to 1,121.4 Mtoe), after suffering an exceptional 4.2% drop over the previous twelve-month period.
The actual share of renewable energies in EU’s total electricity generation rose from 28.2% in 2014 to 28.9% in 2015 (+0.7%) while overall output rose from 3,190.8 TWh in 2014 to 3,234.3 TWh in 2015.
Increased renewable energy work force in 2015
EurObserv’ER assumes a growing renewable energy work force of 1.139 million persons employed throughout the EU for ten monitored RES technologies, a growth of 10,000 jobs compared to 2014. The combined turnover of 10 renewable energy sectors in all 28 EU member states reached € 153 billion in 2015 and thus slightly grew compared to 2014 (€ 148.7 billion).
Solid biomass least expensive renewable energy technology for electricity production in the EU
Based on aggregated results for the EU the levelised cost of energy (LCoE) for solid biomass seem the least expensive, and even in the same range as the reference electricity price. Commercial large scale PV and wind energy show a wide LCoE range, which is due to Member countries’ preconditions for PV and wind energy generation.
Renewables replace substantial amounts of imported energy and avoid costly imports
The increased use of renewable sources of energy in power, heat and transport fuel sector led to the reduction of €87 billion in the EU-28 member states. In addition 302 Mtoe of fossil fuels (gasoline, oil, coal, gas) were substituted by renewable sources of energy in 2015.
R&D expenditures in renewable energy technologies reveal strong position of EU
In 2014 total public R&D investment in renewable energies technologies amounted to 781.6 M€ in the EU28. The GDP shares hereby display a very strong position of Sweden, France and Belgium. In a global context the EU 28 was followed by the US with 671.5 M€ of R&D expenditures taking the lead in 2015 with 755.4 M€.
Key data for European Union (EU) in 2015
- 28.8 % Renewable electricity share in total EU generation in 2015 (27.5% in 2014)
- 18.6% Renewable heat share in total EU generation (18.1% in 2014)
- 94.2 Mtoe Renewable heat (and cooling) consumption in 2015 (89.2 Mtoe in 2014)
- 935.8 TWh Electricity production from renewables in the EU in 2015 (899 TWh in 2014)
- 1.14 million jobs in the European renewable energy sector
- €153 bn turnover generated by renewable energy sources in EU-28 in 2015
- €87 bn avoided expenses in EU-28 through renewables in 2015 (€104 bn in 2014)
- 302 Mtoe EU-28 substituted fossil fuels in 2015 (292 Mtoe in 2014)