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Although the European Union had legislated in the area of energy policy for many years, the concept of introducing a mandatory and comprehensive European energy policy was for a long time not approved. With the Treaty of Lisbon this changed. The Treaty includes legal solidarity in matters of energy supply and gives the EU the right to change energy policy within the EU.
Following the adoption of the Kyoto protocol, the EU set out in implementing the greenhouse gas reductions goals. Given the flagship initiative at the time of Europe 2020, the climate and energy package that was proposed in 2007 and adopted in 2009 took the form of the 20 20 20 by 2020 goals. The package is a set of binding legislation to ensure the EU meets its climate and energy targets by the year 2020. It includes three key targets:
* 20% cut in greenhouse gas emissions (from 1990 levels)
* 20% of EU energy from renewables
* 20% improvement in energy efficiency