People around the world keep turning to the courts as politicians fail to deliver anything close to the necessary level of climate action. The Portuguese children’s case filed today with the European Court of Human Rights, is the most recent one in Europe that is trying to hold European countries accountable for their failure to deliver urgent cuts in greenhouse gas emissions.
Von der Leyen should look for a commissioner that brings trade policy in line with climate ambition to limit temperature rise to 1.5°C, after her trade chief, Phil Hogan, resigned yesterday evening.
According to youth climate activists who met with the German Chancellor yesterday, Angela Merkel announced that Germany will not ratify the EU-Mercosur Agreement in its current form. This news came after the mobilisation of 1.7 million Europeans calling upon the EU to stop the EU-Mercosur Agreement .
Europe is once again hit by heat waves. Impacts of the climate crisis are threatening lives, livelihoods, jobs and fundamental rights of many Europeans. The EU must urgently and drastically increase its 2030 climate target and direct all EU funds towards a just transition to climate neutrality to protect its citizens.
More links between air pollution and Covid-19 cases, hospital admissions, and deaths are discovered by the study of 355 municipalities in the Netherlands conducted by the IZA Institute of Labour Economics(1). Other studies found that long term exposure to PM2.5, nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) and sulphur dioxide (SO₂) can reduce lung function(2) and cause respiratory illness(3).
EU Heads of State and Government agreed on a more ambitious green recovery proposal, which includes an increase of the climate action spending target to 30%, with a view to achieving the new EU 2030 climate target that is to be updated by the end of the year.
A new report published by Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe and CEE Bankwatch Network identifies concrete investment proposals as listed in National Energy and Climate Plans (NECP) of 14 Member States to be funded in order to ensure a green recovery. The report titled “EU Funds for a Green Recovery”, comes right after the president of the European Council Charles Michel’s proposal to increase the climate spending target of EU funds from 25% to 30%, and makes it clear that if the EU funds are used wisely, they could both ensure a green recovery and boost climate ambition.
The European Commission aims to make hydrogen a crucial part of becoming climate-neutral, proposing a massive scale up in the short term, but needs to focus early enough on hydrogen produced with renewable electricity, the only hydrogen able to deliver the needed climate benefits in hard to decarbonise sectors. The Hydrogen and the Energy System Integration Strategies revealed today rely on the use of fossil gas up to 2050 and “cleaning the gas sector” as stated by Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson at the press conference this morning without giving a clear end date for fossil gas use. This is in stark contrast with the need to limit temperature rise to 1.5°C and avoid dangerous climate change.
The Committee for regional development of the European Parliament has adopted its position on the Just Transition Fund. By allowing the fund to finance fossil gas, they set the Parliament up against the European Commission and the Council, while diverting away from earlier European Parliament's decisions to end fossil fuel subsidies.
Offshore wind plays a key role in the energy transition to limit temperature rise to 1.5° as stated in the Paris Agreement. The North Seas Countries, including Germany, and the European Commission met today to discuss how to improve planning and cooperation to ensure offshore wind is deployed in a timely and consistent manner.