Trade body the European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA) has called on the European Council to set binding renewable energy targets for individual EU countries at its next meeting.

The call follows rumours that the council, which comprises EU heads of state, is considering setting a 30% target for the EU, an improvement on the 27% previously proposed by the European Commission earlier this year.

The council, which comprises heads of state from EU member countries, is due to meet on 23-24 October to agree the bloc’s renewable energy target for 2030.

EPIA said the possibilty of a higher overall target was a “step in the right direction” for Europe's mission to slash carbon emissions and urged the council to follow through with the higher target when it comes to a decision next month.

But EPIA said that in addition to the higher overall target the council would need stronger state-level aspirations. Currently the target being discussed is only for the whole EU rather than individual countries, prompting concern that it will lack sufficient bite to drive further renewbales development across the EU.

EPIA chief executive James Watson said: “An EU-wide target, without meaningful national targets, would not provide the stability and predictability an investor would need. To ensure that public and private capital is driven towards renewable energies, the right policy signals need to be given at European and national levels. The proposal currently on the table still falls short on the objective of incentivising investments in renewable energy and creating the low carbon future a vast majority of Europeans want.”

EPIA spokesman Benjamin Fontaine told PV Tech that news of the higher target being considered by the council had emerged from sources in a number of European institutions. “This is better than what was so far on the table, but we need an effective implementation at national level,” he added.