There's no doubt today that mankind has contributed to the changing climate by
her use of fossil fuels. This must change in the nearby future. The European
leaders are expressing concern that renewable energy sources are not being
used to their full potential. The 2001/77/EC Directive on Electricity Production
from Renewable Energy Sources was accepted in 2001 to encourage the
development of energy production from renewable sources, which is
considered a step towards the fulfillment of the goal of the Union, that 12% of
the gross energy consumption should come from renewable energy sources by
the year 2010.
The objective of this thesis is to illuminate the common legislation of the EU
regarding renewable energy with regard to goal fulfillment, judicial quality,
conflicts with other goals of the EU and other faults. The objective is reached
by a hermeneutic study in which interpretation of written text is the main
method. To analyze whether the EU stimulates the usage of renewable energy
within the union I have applied a method used in audits. I have analyzed an
empirical material and drawn conclusions using an inductive method.
It is difficult to make specific demands on the legislation of member states
because the circumstances vary heavily depending on external factors and other
laws. The laws of the European Union must conform to a large number of
criteria to be considered rational and legitimate. They must be in line with the
basic goals of the union, serve the purpose of the legislator, not violate any
human rights and be coherent with other legislation.
Directive 2001/77/EC complies with the fundamental goals of the union. It also
complies fully with basic human rights, particularly the right to a good
environment, which is included in the third generation human rights. The
directive does not however meet all the political rationalities because it does not
serve all intended political purposes. The directive was accepted as an important
step for the union to reach the goals of the Kyoto protocol. It is, however, clear
that the goals for the year 2010, as presented in the directive and the Kyoto
protocol, will not be reached unless the use of renewable energy sources sees a
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