The European Union is on track to exceed its ‘Fit for 55’ goals of slashing greenhouse gas emissions by more than half by the end of the decade. Here’s how.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has heralded the news that the European Union (EU) is “on track to exceed 2030 targets” as “an important sign that the green transition is possible”.
“The European Green Deal is delivering the change we need to reduce CO² emissions,” she said in remarks published by the EC on 9th October. “It does so while keeping the interests of our citizens in mind, and providing opportunities for our European industry. The legislation to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 is now in place, and I am very happy that we are even on track to overshoot this ambition. This is an important sign to Europe and to our global partners that the green transition is possible, that Europe is delivering on its promises.”
FIT FOR 55
The ‘Fit for 55’ package was first tabled in July 2021 following the passing of the European Climate Law, which enshrined in law the goals of making Europe’s economy and society “climate-neutral” by 2050 as well as the intermediary target of “reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels”.
All sections of the Fit for 55 package are now complete, following confirmation from the EC that it had formally adopted the revised Renewable Energy Directive and the ReFuelEU Aviation Regulation on 9th October.
RENEWABLE ENERGY DIRECTIVE
“The agreement on the revised Renewable Energy Directive sets the EU’s binding renewable energy target for 2030 at a minimum of 42.5%, up from the current 32% target,” reads the official EC communiqué. “In practice, this would almost double the existing share of renewable energy in the EU. It is also agreed that Europe will aim to reach 45% of renewables in the EU energy mix by 2030.”
A new EU-level target of improving energy efficiency by 11.7% by 2030 has also been included, which states that EU Members should “implement energy efficiency improvements as a priority among people affected by energy poverty”.
REFUELEU AVIATION REGULATION
The second “pillar of legalisation” to be adopted in this final stage is the ReFuelEU Aviation Regulation, which “sets out EU-wide harmonised rules for the promotion of sustainable aviation fuels (SAF), with an increasing minimum share of SAF required to be blended with kerosene by aviation fuel suppliers and supplied to EU airports”.
With the completion of the package, the implementation of the Fit for 55 legislation has now begun across the continent, says the EC.
If all goes according to plan, it will reduce EU net greenhouse gas emissions by 57% by 2030, surpassing the targets set originally and helping the bloc on its way to its ambitions of climate neutrality by 2050.
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Photo source: Serge Le Strat, Unsplash