Twenty years of energy policy in Europe: achievement of targets and lessons for the future
MetadataShow full item record
Energy transitionRenewable EnergiesSaving and efficiencyMachine learningGeographic information systems
Márquez-Sobrino, P., Díaz-Cuevas, P., Pérez-Pérez, B. et al. Twenty years of energy policy in Europe: achievement of targets and lessons for the future. Clean Techn Environ Policy 25, 2511–2527 (2023). [https://doi.org/10.1007/s10098-023-02543-x]
SponsorshipMAPER@I project TED2021- 129484A-I00 funded by MCIN/AEI/10.13039/501100011033; The European Union “NextGenerationEU”/PRTR.
The different energy transition efforts in the EU-27 countries are analysed, paying special attention to the achievement of set energy targets and the real influence on energy dependence and GHG reduction. Various methodologies were used, ranging from construction of timelines to geo-statistical analysis using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and the implementation of machine learning techniques and models, using R. The results show how different modifications of the energy saving and efficiency targets, along with lower power consumption due to the COVID pandemic, resulted in that although most of the EU-27 countries have achieved their saving and efficiency targets, this has not been reflected in a real reduction in consumption (compared to 1990 levels). In addition, the fulfilment of the objectives has not resulted in a reduction in energy dependence, generating a false sense of security and satisfaction in the fulfilment of the targets. Concerning GHGs, almost all EU-27 countries decrease their GHG emissions per capita compared to 2000 (with the exception of Lithuania, Bulgaria, Croatia and Latvia), with this decrease being mainly related to the fulfilment of renewable energy targets in transport. The conclusion highlights the need to make greater efforts to achieve saving and efficiency in the near future; otherwise, higher power consumption via renewable energy sources, while helping meet future increases in energy demand, will not impact the reduction in energy dependence compared to current levels.