28 November, Brussels - The European Commission today published its plan for the EU to become a net-zero emissions society by 2050, stressing that the transition is technologically possible and will bring jobs and growth to the bloc.
The roadmap establishes a long term vision, without looking to propose or amend existing emissions reduction targets, set at 40% by 2030. Instead the plan outlines eight scenarios for Member States to cut emissions, two of these leading to climate neutrality.
In terms of substantive content, the plan highlights seven strategic priorities for achieving a net-zero scenario: energy efficiency; deployment of renewables; clean, safe and connected mobility; competitive industry and circular economy; infrastructure and interconnections; bio-economy and natural carbon sinks and; carbon capture and storage.
Renewable energy is described as the ‘backbone’ of the plan. The Commission expects that domestic electricity production will double between now and 2050, reaching a scenario where more than 80% of electricity will come from renewable sources.
The plan also makes the economic case for carbon-neutrality, forecasting a 2% boost to the EU economy, and a €3 trillion saving on energy imports, which will be reduced by over 70%. Further savings will be made by limiting climate-related damages like flooding and droughts.
With this plan the European Commission is positioning the EU as the global leader on climate change. This is particularly timely with the next round of international climate talks taking starting next week in Poland.
You can access the full text here.