The EU has agreed in principle to enact stronger emission reduction targets as the 27 member states look to slash carbon emissions in road and domestic maritime transport, buildings, agriculture, waste, and small industries.
Those sectors are not covered by the current EU Emissions Trading System (EU-ETS), the EU noted in a press release announcing the provisional political agreement.
Under the agreement, the EU-level of greenhouse gas emission reduction target will be a 40% cut in emissions in those sectors by 2030 compared to 2005.
“The agreement keeps the increased national targets assigned to each member state as proposed by the Commission and adjusts the way member states can use existing flexibilities to meet their targets,” the EU said.
“These sectors, directly linked to our everyday lives, generate about 60% of greenhouse gas emissions. I am glad that we managed to reach a swift agreement on this proposal just in time for COP 27,” said Marian Jure?ka, the minister of environment of the Czech Republic, which holds the rotating presidency of the EU.
“This will allow the EU to show to the world that it seriously intends to reduce emissions in line with its commitments under the Paris Agreement of keeping global warming within safe levels,” Jure?ka added.
The provisional agreement, reached by the Council and the European Parliament, needs to be formally adopted by the Council and the Parliament to become law.
The stricter national targets would nevertheless ensure fair contribution from member states, with richer countries such as Sweden, Finland, Luxembourg, Germany, and Denmark now having to cut their emissions by 50% by 2030.
The enhanced emission reduction targets are part of the so-called ‘Fit for 55’ plan of the EU, which aims to reduce total EU emissions by at least 55% by 2030 and make the bloc climate neutral by 2050.