Wind power could meet 31% of the European Union's (EU) goal of reducing emissions by 20% by 2020, the European Wind Energy Association reports.
If emissions avoided by other renewable electricity technologies are included, the equivalent of almost half (48%) of the EU's target of reducing emissions by 20% will be avoided, the organization adds.
EWEA says that contributions from wind power show it is possible for the EU to move from a 20% to a 30% emissions-reduction target. If the EU were to move to a 30% target, wind energy could still provide the equivalent of 20% of the reduction. The report also analyses the impact of wind energy on the EU's Emissions Trading System (ETS) emissions-reduction targets and the international greenhouse-gas-reduction pledges.
The association claims that the data backs up an earlier report from the European Environment Agency showing that both the crisis and renewables have been the main drivers of emissions reductions in recent years.