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Three Member States have achieved EU's 2020 renewables in transportation target

With a 16.7 percent share of energy derived from renewable sources in its 2015 gross final consumption of energy, the European Union (EU) is moving closer to its Europe 2020 headline target of 20 percent to be reached by 2020. For transportation, the 2020 sub-target is 10 percent of which the EU as a whole reached 6.7 percent in 2015. However, the achievement range across the Member States (MS) varies considerably, from 24 percent in Sweden to 0.4 percent in Estonia.

Share of transport fuel from renewable energy sources in the EU 2015 (illustration courtesy Eurostat).

Share of transport fuel from renewable energy sources in the EU 2015 (illustration courtesy Eurostat).

With a 16.7 percent share of energy derived from renewable sources in its gross final consumption of energy, the European Union (EU) is moving closer to its Europe 2020 headline target of 20 percent to be reached by 2020.

However, the Europe 2020 strategy also has a specific sub-indicator on the share of transport fuels that come from renewable sources. The target for this sub-indicator is 10 percent with calculations made in accordance with Directive 2009/28/EC on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources. Overall in the EU, the share of energy from renewable sources in transport stood at 6.7 percent in 2015, compared with 1.4 percent in 2004.

Austria, Finland, and Sweden have achieved 10 percent target

In 2015, only three Member States, Austria, Finland, and Sweden, had achieved the 10 percent renewables in transport target. According to Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union (EU) both Sweden and Finland had reached over double the target with 24.0 percent and 22 percent respectively whereas Austria achieved 11.4 percent.

The rapid growth of biofuels in Sweden in recent years is mainly attributed to the increased use of hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) diesel, a renewable diesel made from different bio-based raw materials. Sweden has also an extensive use of rapeseed-derived biodiesel (RME).

The rapid growth of biofuels in Sweden in recent years is mainly attributed to the increased use of hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) diesel, a renewable diesel made from different bio-based raw materials. Sweden has also an extensive use of rapeseed-derived biodiesel (RME).

France and Slovakia were both relatively close to achieving the target with 8.5 percent. Most of the other EU Member States were around the half-way point to meeting their 2020 objective.

With less than 3 percent of energy from renewables in transport, Estonia at 0.4 percent, Greece at 1.4 percent, Spain at 1.7 percent, Slovenia at 2.2 percent and Cyprus at 2.5 percent were the Member States furthest from the 10 percent target.

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