The European energy system is undergoing rapid changes to set the EU economy on a path towards carbon neutrality, and the sustainable and efficient use of resources. Renewable energy is instrumental to this transformation.

EU efforts to double the share of renewable energy in its final consumption have paid off; the amount of fossil fuels used and their associated greenhouse gas emissions have been significantly reduced. While renewable energy has also contributed to reductions in certain air pollutants, such as sulphur dioxide, the outcomes are not all positive. For example, in countries where biomass burning has increased considerably since 2005, emissions of certain air pollutants, such as particulate matter, have also increased. 

For further information, please consult our briefing Renewable energy in Europe: key for climate objectives, but air pollution needs attention. The renewable energy report shows recent trends across various renewable energy technologies for electricity, heating and cooling, and transport, as well as per country. Moreover, the renewable energy impact dashboard present estimates of the impact of renewable energy consumption on fossil fuel use, greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and air pollution since 2005.