Title: European Energy Transition versus Biodiversity: Win-win effects or tradeoffs?
Language: input.forms.value-pairs.iso-languages.en
Authors: Frick, Valentin 
Qualification level: Diploma
Advisor: Rapp, Klaus 
Issue Date: 2022
Frick, V. (2022). European Energy Transition versus Biodiversity: Win-win effects or tradeoffs? [Master Thesis, Technische Universität Wien]. reposiTUm. https://doi.org/10.34726/hss.2022.103451
Number of Pages: 59
Qualification level: Diploma
The European Union has made the transition toward renewable energy sources a priority. At the same time, the protection and restauration of biodiversity is attributed greater significance. This thesis answers the questions whether the Renewable Energies Directive II (RED II) and the Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 are compatible. While renewable energy sources like hydropower, wind power, solar power, biomass and biofuels help reduce CO2 emissions, there are also possible effects on biodiversity. The research in this thesis found that the RED II and the Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 are widely incompatible as their implementation impairs the achievement of the respective other policy goals. However, the RED II defines extensive sustainability criteria for bioenergy to protect biodiversity, making biofuels an area of exception in which efforts to protect biodiversity are expressly considered. Furthermore, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by switching to renewable energy sources also promotes biodiversity as it protects vulnerable natural systems and habitats. The hypothesis that this evident disconnect between the two policy areas can be bridged with the help of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) only partly holds true. On the one hand, such an assessment considers the possible effects of a renewable energy project on biodiversity. On the other hand, however, in the absence of an actual integrated approach which also comprises the requirements of other related directives, there is still a significant divide between the two areas. In order to bring them closer together, both the RED II and the Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 would need to specifically address key challenges in relation to the opposite policy area. Currently, this is only the case for bioenergy.
Keywords: renewable energies; biodiversity; EU policy; policy coherence
URI: https://doi.org/10.34726/hss.2022.103451
DOI: 10.34726/hss.2022.103451
Library ID: AC16557361
Organisation: E017 - TU Wien Academy 
Publication Type: Thesis
Appears in Collections:Thesis

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