Renewable energy sources (RES) are essential to tackle climate change. Renewable energy (RE) technologies are uniquely well suited to respond to the limitations of current patterns of energy generation and consumption, to complement existing energy production systems, and to contribute to the further modernization of the energy sector. On the other hand, climate change is a major challenge to sustainable development worldwide and increasingly recognized by forward-looking political and business leaders. One of the tasks we are facing is a profound transformation of our energy system over the next few decades of replacing fossil fuels with REs and dramatically increasing energy efficiency. This article aims at giving a critical picture of the expenditures in research and development for RES in the EU-15 Member States. The European experience has shown that wind energy comprises today a reliable and cost-effective technology with positive effects on the reduction of CO2 emissions.