The measures are part of the 27-nation region’s plan to cut emissions by at least 55% from 1990 levels by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050.
The EU wants to be a global leader in the green shift, an increasingly challenging objective after US President Joe Biden’s landmark climate package and competition from China in low-carbon technologies and critical materials. At the same time, the bloc is grappling with an unprecedented energy crisis triggered by a cut in gas supply from Russia following the war in Ukraine.
“It is now more important than ever for the EU to get and stay on track to climate neutrality and resilience, providing a positive example to galvanize global action and to work with our partners worldwide to develop the solutions needed for all to transition to climate neutrality,” the commission said.
The EU indicated an emissions cut of 75% to 80% would follow the average trajectory between 2030 and climate neutrality in 2050. Lowering pollution by more than 90% would signify “a very high ambition, close to reaching climate neutrality already in 2040,” the commission said.
The commission signaled it is considering various options on the evolution of the EU Emissions Trading System, the bloc’s flagship carbon cap-and-trade program. They included an extension to cover new sectors, potential inclusion of all fossil-fuel uses and accounting for carbon capture technologies.
It also said removing carbon dioxide from the environment is indispensable and sought views on how to tackle emissions from agriculture, including putting a carbon price on greenhouse gases from the sector.
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