A race has started amongst European countries to make up lost ground in hitting their renewable energy targets for 2020, with new contracting opportunities in the sector set to soar across the continent as a result.

An analysis from international professional consultancy Procorre suggests that a number of prominent EU countries, including the UK, the Netherlands and France, are lagging well behind in the quest to increase the proportion of total energy consumption generated from renewable sources.

The UK is currently generating just 4.2% of its total energy consumption from renewable sources, significantly behind the 2020 target of 15%. The target for the Netherlands is 16%, but it is currently generating just 4.5%, while the target for France is 23%, which is currently generating just 16% from renewable sources.

As EU countries ramp up their effort to achieve their 2020 targets, the renewable energy industry is likely to expand. Procorre cites European Commission estimates that 400,000 new jobs and contracts will be needed to hit the EU-wide target of 20% by 2020.

Procorre’s relationship manager, Lisa Mangan, said: “I would expect to see huge growth in the number of new roles for contractors in this area throughout Europe. Politicians have long talked about increased production of renewable energy creating a growth in the jobs market. Contractors throughout Europe are already benefiting from that growth of the renewable energy industry.”

UK Umbrella Company employees and other independent professionals with expertise in renewable energy can expect to see demand rising steeply as Northern European countries, especially Scandinavia, seek to attract international specialist contractors.

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