New EEA report sets off alarm bells: Time for EU leaders to walk the talk on “Climate Emergency”

A new report by the European Environment Agency launched today shows that the EU needs to translate commitments into urgent action to slash greenhouse gas emissions at the scale needed to prevent even more dangerous climate change.

Despite progress made by Member States in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing renewable energy and energy efficiency over the last ten to fifteen years, the report “The European environment - state and outlook 2020” reveals that the EU has to take enormous strides to give itself a chance to meet its current climate and energy targets for 2030, let alone the objectives of the Paris Agreement.

The findings are especially alarming given that the EU’s 2030 climate target dramatically falls short of the steep emissions cuts needed to make the Paris agreement goal of keeping temperature rise to 1.5°C a reality. Thus the EU must propose a substantially increased 2030 climate target in early 2020, to at least 65% emission reductions, and accelerate the transition towards fully energy efficient and renewables-based economies at an unprecedented pace. This is the only way for the bloc to walk the ‘Climate Emergency’ talk.

The EU needs to agree on a new 2030 climate target well before the UN Climate Summit in Glasgow in November next year. In order to do so, the upcoming European Green Deal must include a proposal for a much higher target so that EU leaders can start negotiations and decide on a new 2030 climate ambition level as soon as possible in 2020. In addition, the Commission should provide EU countries with considerable financial support and adequate policy incentives to make them move from the current inertia to the rapid transformation that European citizens are calling for.

Wendel Trio, Director of Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe, said:
“Current EU leaders are the last generation that can prevent the climate breakdown. Declaring a climate emergency is clearly not enough, citizens want them to act now, and not in 30 years. The EU must propose a substantially increased 2030 climate target in early 2020 to make the Paris Agreement a reality. This must be central to the upcoming European Green Deal, which must also lead to increased financial support for climate action in Europe’s regions.”

ENDS

Contact:

Nicolas Derobert, CAN Europe Communications Coordinator, nicolas@caneurope.org, +32 483 62 18 88

Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe is Europe's leading NGO coalition fighting dangerous climate change. With over 160 member organisations from 35 European countries, representing over 1.700 NGOs and more than 47 million citizens, CAN Europe promotes sustainable climate, energy and development policies throughout Europe.

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