The Mediterranean region has vast solar and wind energy resources but relies heavily on fossil fuels, much of them imported. And energy consumption has doubled over the past 30 years in the region, instigated mainly by a big increase in air conditioning.
A further drastic decrease of fossil energy consumption could be realised by strict minimum efficiency requirements for air-conditioning technologies – in terms of best equipment available, the energy efficiency could be doubled compared to the present market average. Adding wind energy, acting as bulk electricity provider, allows a solution both to the Mediterranean energy problem and the global need to reduce CO2 emissions.
“Where significant effort is necessary to achieve EU 2020 and 2050 targets, EU science is given by the SET Plan the opportunity to expand its role by fostering greater co-operation and major changes in the EU’s approach to decarbonised energy Technologies,” said Magda Moner from the Renewable Energies Unit of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability, DG Research Centre, EC, Italy.