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EC recommends a 90% cut of greenhouse gas emissions by 2040

7 February 2024

The European Commission published a detailed impact assessment on possible ways to achieve the agreed goal of making the European Union climate neutral by 2050 and recommended a 90% net reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. greenhouse until 2040 compared to the levels of 1990, informs a press release of the Community Executive.

The Communication also sets out a number of enabling policy conditions that are necessary to achieve the 90% target. These include the full implementation of the agreed 2030 framework, ensuring the competitiveness of European industry, a greater focus on a just transition that leaves no one behind, a level playing field with international partners and a strategic dialogue on the post -2030, including industry and the agricultural sector, according to Agerpres.

Setting a 2040 climate target will help European industry, investors, citizens and governments make decisions this decade that will keep the EU on track to meet its climate neutrality target in 2050. It will also boost Europe’s resilience to future crises and, in particular, will strengthen the EU’s energy independence from fossil fuel imports, which represented over 4% of GDP in 2022.

Achieving a 9% reduction in emissions by 2040 will require the fulfillment of a series of favorable conditions. The starting point is the full implementation of existing legislation to reduce emissions by at least 55% by 2030. The ongoing update of draft National Energy and Climate Plans (PNECs) is a key element in monitoring progress, and The Commission collaborates with the Member States, with the industry and with the social partners to facilitate the necessary actions, the press release states.

According to the quoted source, the green deal must now become an industrial decarbonisation pact that builds on existing industrial strengths such as wind power, hydropower and electrolysers, and continues to increase domestic production capacity in growth sectors such as batteries , electric vehicles, heat pumps, photovoltaic solar energy, CUC/CSC, biogas and biomethane, as well as the circular economy. Carbon pricing and access to finance are also essential for European industry to achieve its emission reduction targets.

“Security, solidarity and social policies must remain at the heart of the transition. Climate action must benefit all citizens in our societies, and climate policies must take into account those who are most vulnerable or face the greatest challenges in terms of adaptation. The Fund to Mitigate the Social Impact of Climate Actions and the Just Transition Fund are examples of such policies that will already help citizens, regions, businesses and workers in this decade,” the statement emphasized.

Finally, open dialogue with all stakeholders is an essential prerequisite for achieving the transition to a clean economy. The Commission has already established formal dialogues with stakeholders in industry and agriculture, and the coming months of policy debates in Europe represent an important opportunity to engage the public on the next steps and policy options. The structured dialogue with the social partners should be strengthened to ensure their contribution, emphasizing employment, mobility, job quality, investments in retraining and improvement.

The energy sector is expected to achieve full decarbonisation shortly after 2040, based on all zero- and low-carbon energy solutions, including renewable energy, nuclear energy, energy efficiency, storage, CCS, CUC, carbon dioxide emissions, geothermal and hydroelectric energy. The Industrial Alliance for Small Modular Reactors, launched on Tuesday, is the latest initiative to strengthen industrial competitiveness and ensure a strong EU supply chain and skilled workforce. An important benefit of these efforts is the reduction of dependence on fossil fuels due to the 80% decrease in their energy consumption in the period 2021-2040.

“In the 2030s, we should see major progress in the transition away from fossil fuels and an increasing share of renewable energy sources in our energy mix. We are sending a clear signal to investors that Europe remains on the right track and it provides long-term predictability and stability. For our citizens, we are sending a clear signal that cleaner solutions are on the way and that we are supporting them in the transition,” said Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson.

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