The latest piece of EU legislation designed to tackle climate change is the Renewable Energy Directive 2009. Under the Directive, Member States are required to adopt national targets for renewables that are consistent with reaching the EU Commission’s target of 22% of electricity to be generated from renewables by 2010. The indicative target that the proposal sets for the UK is 10% of electricity by that date. It is expected that the UK will miss the 22% 2010 target by a considerable distance.  

The Directive requires that the Government submit a National Action Plan to the Commission by the end of June 2010, detailing how it proposes to meet its obligations. The Directive includes measures to remove barriers to growth for renewables, including simplifying authorisation procedures for new projects.  

It is anticipated that renewables will complement more established sources of energy, such as coal and nuclear power.