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UK has 'near miss' on renewable energy target

The UK missed its indicative renewable energy target for 2011-12, according to statistics published by the Government today.

The indicative target shows whether the country is on track to reach the legally binding 2020 targets for Europe.

The UK had 3.93% of its energy come from renewables in 2011-12. This is 0.1% short of the 4.04% indicative target. The majority of other member states reached this target by the end of 2011.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) is now required to submit an amended national renewable energy action plan to the European Commission by 30 June 2014. Its purpose is to lay down a strategy to get back on course to meet the 2020 targets.

The Renewable Energy Association (REA) chief executive Gaynor Hartnell said: “This is a near miss. Had Government interfered less with its existing policies for biomass power, stuck to its timetable on the Renewable Heat Incentive, or laid out a clear framework for biofuels, then it would almost certainly have met its indicative target.”

The UK also missed the previous indicative target (2011 NREAP target). The UK is now the only EU member state to miss both targets and is expected not to reach the 2020 target, according to the REA.

The UK remains 25th out of the 27 EU Member States on the share of renewables in its heating system, power supply and transport fuels, according to the latest data from the European Commission.

Although the UK’s 2020 target is one of the lowest among the EU member states, at 15%, it requires one of the highest annual growth rates:16.5% year-on-year to 2020.

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