Changes to government support schemes for renewable energy in several European countries led to a fall into the expansion of alternative power during 2012, according to a report by The Union of the Electricity Industry (Eurelectric).
Renewable energy capacity expanded by only 11% in 2012, slowing from the 15% expansion recorded in 2011.
A shift among fossil fuels from gas-fired towards coal-fired power generation was also recorded in the annual report, entitled “Power Statistics & Trends”.
The document also noted “stagnating electricity demand” and “stationary carbon dioxide emissions”.
Eurelectric Secretary General Hans ten Berge said:
“Our data show that the generation mix in Europe is changing: in 2012 fossil fuel fired generation for the first time accounted for less than 50% of total EU-27 generation.
“But the expansion of renewables is going hand in hand with an expansion of coal-fired generation, undermining the progress that Europe has made towards decarbonisation.
“A strong carbon price signal is needed to reverse this trend.”