EU Environmental Ministers made 2050 Net Zero Emissions Target legally binding.

European Union (EU) Environment Ministers signed a deal in Luxembourg on October 23, 2020. The deal has made EU’s 2050 net-zero emissions target legally binding on the states.

Highlights

  • The new deal will require billions of investments annually.
  • It will also form the basis for Europe’s plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
  • It also aims to aid the bloc to achieve its target of reaching net-zero emissions by 2050.
  • The decision on 2030 emissions-cutting target will be discussed in December.
  • The 2050 net-zero emission target involves the whole EU. It provides that if one country makes higher emissions other will have to cut the emissions.

EU’s 2050 net-zero emissions target

The EU has aimed at becoming climate-neutral by 2050 by bringing the net greenhouse gas emission to zero. This objective of the EU is the central portion of the European Green Deal. The aim also comply with the EU’s commitment to global climate action under the Paris Agreement.

Why Net-Zero emission is important?

The transition to a climate-neutral society or Net-Zero emission is an urgent challenge. However, it also provides an opportunity to build a better and sustainable future for all.

How will it be achieved?

In order to achieve the net-zero emission targets, efforts from all parts of society and economic sectors viz. power sector, industry, mobility, buildings, agriculture and forestry becomes essential and crucial. The EU can achieve the target in following manner:

  1. By investing into realistic technological solutions
  2. By empowering the citizens
  3. By aligning action in key areas including industrial policy, finance and research

Background

EU commision had set the net-zero emission target in November 2018. It covers nearly all EU policies. It comply with the Paris Agreement objective to keep the global temperature below 2°C and to pursue steps in order to keep it to 1.5°C. Under the European Green Deal, the EU Commission proposed the first European Climate Law  on 4 March 2020. This law enshrined the 2050 climate-neutrality target into it. The European Parliament also endorsed the net-zero greenhouse gas emissions objective in March 2019. It also endorsed the resolution on the European Green Deal in January 2020.

Way Forward

EU Member States need to develop long-term strategies to achieve the greenhouse gas emissions reductions in order to meet their commitments as per the Paris Agreement and EU objectives.