Last June, European leaders agreed on the deployment of renewable energy production for the next decade in Europe. The new regulatory framework sets the share of renewable energies at 32% in final energy consumption by 2030 with an upward revision clause in 2023.

This agreement will be transposed into national law by 30 June 2021.

An increased target for renewable production in Europa

This text proposes a substantial increase in the proportion of renewable energy in European energy consumption that goes beyond the 27% initially proposed by the Commission. This new ambition allows the Paris Agreement to be broken down into concrete objectives for the EU Member States as it aims to accelerate public and private investment in renewable technologies ensuring a transition to a clean and modern economy.

It should be noted that the federations of the renewable energy sector consider that this agreement remains unambitious. According to them, the common goal should reach at least 35% if Europe wants to maintain the average increase in global temperatures below 1.5 ° C.

Progres in collective self-consumption

Although this new agreement does not meet all the expectations of the renewable industry sector, we note the progress made in individual and collective self-consumption. Indeed, the provisional agreement strengthens self-consumption as a right and includes Parliament’s wish to ban charges and fees on self-consumed energy until 2026. In this new framework, renewable energy consumers will be able to produce renewable energy for their own consumption, store it, sell excess energy on the grid and even share it through renewable energy communities, opening the way to new consumption patterns.

What about Belgium?

It should be recalled that Belgium has set a target of achieving a share of renewable energy production in gross final consumption of 13% by 2020 in accordance with the EU Directive 20-20-20. In addition, the gradual exit from the use of nuclear energy foresees the closure of 7 power plants in 2025 (Doel 1-2-3-4 and Tihange 1-2-3). Increasing renewable production is therefore a determining factor for the Belgian electricity system.

In 2016, renewable production covered 8.7% of Belgium’s domestic energy consumption.

In 2017, the share of renewable energies represents 19.2% of net electricity production.

In terms of installed capacity, renewable sources have a generation capacity of 8000 MW in 2017, or 36.2% of the total installed electricity generation capacity.

And in Wallonia?

At the Walloon level, the distribution of efforts between the federal and the regional authorities requires the Walloon Region to achieve a renewable target of 1,277 Mtoe (million tons of oil equivalent), equivalent to 14,850 GWh by 2020. This objective was revised upwards in 2015 by Wallonia to reach a production level of 15 650 GWh still by 2020. Beyond this binding intra-Belgian objective, the Walloon Government has announced its intention to move towards the objective of covering 20% of regional energy consumption by 2030 from renewable energy sources.

The increase in renewable production in Wallonia is mainly based on the development of on-shore wind power (target of 2,437 GWh in 2020 and 4,134 GWh in 2030), corresponding to the installation of 30 wind turbines on average per year and on the development of the photovoltaic installation.

Wallonia is on the right track for achieving its goal. There has been a significant increase in power installed since 2004 in the photovoltaic and wind sectors. In 2016, Walloon renewable production amounted to 14 869 GWh.