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Take-off time for the renewable energy campaign

The European Commission has issued details of the Campaign for Take-Off, a Community strategy and action plan to support the exploitation of renewable sources of energy. The Campaign for Take-Off is an important part of the Commission's plans to promote the growth of the renew...
The European Commission has issued details of the Campaign for Take-Off, a Community strategy and action plan to support the exploitation of renewable sources of energy. The Campaign for Take-Off is an important part of the Commission's plans to promote the growth of the renewable energy sector to produce at least 12% of the European Union's energy requirements by 2010. The strategy and action plan designed to meet this target have already been set out in a White Paper.

The Campaign for Take-Off aims to accelerate the development of the Commission's renewable energy strategy in its early stages (to the year 2003). It aims to stimulate increased private investment in renewables in a visible manner, while emphasising near market technologies in solar, wind and biomass energy sources.

The following targets in key sectors will be the focus of the campaign:

- 1,000,000 PV systems;
- 15 million square metres of solar collectors;
- 10,000 MW of wind turbine generators;
- 10,000 MW of combined heat and power biomass installations;
- 1,000,000 dwellings heated by biomass;
- 1,000 MW of biogas installations;
- 5 million tonnes of liquid biofuels.

Investment opportunities will be highlighted by promotional activities such as partnerships with industry, a common logo, a campaign catalogue, awards and advertising. National and EU programmes and schemes will trigger and complement private capital. The promotional measures and public funding will be channelled into the solar, wind, and biomass renewable energy sectors, in order to increase the impact and visibility of their efforts.

The Commission estimates that the campaign will need around 30 billion euro of investment funding - with about 75 to 80 % coming from private sources.

The role of the Commission in the campaign is to mobilise funding under EU programmes, to coordinate activities at the EU level, and to provide a framework for the campaign. The main instrument for this will be the ALTENER programme, which will also be the campaign's main promotional tool. Partnership with public authorities and the private sector will be encouraged, and the campaign's progress monitored.

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