The EU is currently paving the way to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Important instruments to achieve this are strong increases in the deployment of renewable energies, improved energy efficiency and the phase-out of fossil fuels. On the policy and planning level in the EU, the first step towards a climate neutral economy involves the creation of National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs), which cover the period from 2021 to 2030. By the end of 2019, each EU member state must submit a final version of their respective NECP to the European Commission.
The analysis assesses the ambitiousness and credibility of the NECPs of four South East European EU member states (Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece and Romania). The main conclusion is that so far, these four countries essentially fail to take an ambitious and integrated approach to energy and climate planning. Their NECPs show insufficient ambition regarding renewable energy development and advancing energy efficiency. The measures set forth for achieving the declared targets also appear to be inadequate.