A new report from the European Environment Agency has found that almost 17% of Europe's energy was produced by renewables like solar and wind in 2015, while 77% of all newly-installed power capacity in the same year came from renewables.

This compared well with 2013, when 15% of the continent's energy came from renewable sources.  Energy from renewable sources is quite unevenly spread across the continent, with  Scandinavian countries producing 30% of their energy from renewables (Sweden is the European leader with over 50% renewable energy, while Luxembourg produced only 4.5% of its energy from renewables).  In the UK, 7% of our energy came from renewables.
The report's author, Mihai Tomescu said that whilst Europe's renewable energy sector was growing, at current rates it would not grow quickly enough to keep global average temperatures below 2 degrees Centigrade above pre-industrial levels.
Europe seems to be pretty much on-track to meet its target of 20% renewable energy share, together with a 20% reduction in greenhouse emissions by 2020.  But the target for 2050 -  reducing emissions by 80% - will be much more difficult to achieve and will involve making some big changes from 2030 onwards, including decisions over whether to phase out internal combustion engines.

Photo by Michael Mees

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