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EU renewable energy consumption accounts for six per cent of total

As the Johannesburg conference on sustainable development approaches, the latest figures for EU energy consumption show that some six per cent of its total is made of renewable energy sources. This average figure masks a wide variance in the level of renewable energy use by in...

As the Johannesburg conference on sustainable development approaches, the latest figures for EU energy consumption show that some six per cent of its total is made of renewable energy sources. This average figure masks a wide variance in the level of renewable energy use by individual Member States. The three highest users of renewable energy by far are Sweden (just over 30 per cent), Finland (just under 24 per cent) and Austria (just over 23 per cent). These stand well ahead of the next two countries Portugal ((13 per cent) and Denmark (just over 10 per cent). The remaining countries all showed less than 10 per cent, ranging from Italy (seven per cent) to the lowest, the UK on just over one per cent. Sweden also managed its top place while reducing overall energy consumption between 1991 and 2000. It was joined in this by Germany, Denmark and Luxembourg. Germany, which has the highest level of gross inland energy consumption, had just under three per cent of this total made up by renewable sources. In terms of totals, Italy has one of the best showings, as it has the fourth largest gross energy consumption, but has the best figures for renewable use of the top four countries, with seven per cent. The figures are for consumption in 2000. Renewables are hydroelectricity, biomass, wind, solar, tidal and geothermal energy.