Political

The European Union's agreement on a climate target (15% reduction in C02 emissions by 2010) is a considerable achievement and of great significance to wind. Political will remains the single most important factor governing wind markets and the 15% CO2 target is a good sign, even though national targets set in Rio are generally not being met. The EU has also agreed the framework for its Internal Energy Market, with a form of third party access which would allow wind onto the grid. This agreement, however, let France off the hook and EDF's huge monopoly survives, to the disadvantage of wind. Also in Europe, Sweden has at long last got moving on its plans to phase out nuclear and develop renewables, but in Germany the utilities continue to hack at wind's protected market. Forthcoming energy liberalisation in Germany is likely to mean a rethink of wind's market framework, but support remains strong. New UN and World Bank reports advocate (on economic and climate grounds) more spending on renewables and less on fossil fuels.

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