Renewables May Have Minor Impact on GHG Emissions, Says Oxford Study

Oxford Institute for Energy Studies concludes that reliance on the trinity of renewables, CHP and energy efficiency, though they may have a useful contribution to make, is not a proven or reliable way of making big CO2 reductions.

Published: 03-Mar-2005

OXFORD, England, March 2, 2005 (Refocus Weekly) Plans by the British government to expand renewable energies will have minor impact on national greenhouse gas emissions, according to an environmental think tank.

Reports issued last year by the UK Climate Change Programme and the European Environment Agency (EEA) suggest that CO2 emissions are "more or less on track" to meet the 20% reduction target, says the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. However, it argues that the policy measures favoured both in Britain and the European Union "have not delivered significant CO2 reductions and are clearly inadequate to the longer term challenge."

Governments in the EU-15 member states expect the greatest impact in reducing emissions to come from renewables, energy efficiency and cogeneration, as well as emissions trading, says senior research fellow Malcolm Keay. The measures "will certainly have a part to play in any climate change programme" but he examines "if it is realistic to rely on them to deliver the Kyoto targets and the further deeper reductions many countries are aiming at."



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