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Green Deal for Europe

EUROPE / The 11. December the European Commission presents the much-debated Green Deal.


A European Green Deal consists of a number of measures to be implemented to that EU will eliminate greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The work will be led by the Commission's Vice President, Dutchman Frans Timmermans.

Currently, the Green Deal consists of 75 points – with ditto action plans, work program and revisions of existing laws. But also a lot of new things, such as swearing in: 'Do no harm' for business and civil society. The controversial climate tariff shines with its absence – it also makes the goal of Hydrogen economy, for the time being. Here are the main points from last week's leaky outline – or rather schedule:

A separate law – presumably in the form of a directive, on climate neutrality will be put forward. This is complicated, as the concept of neutrality means that sectors with continued greenhouse gas emissions must be offset by sectors in the minus. This means the inclusion of carbon-negative solutions such as burning biomass with carbon capture and storage.

Revised Goals

In October 2020 revised revised 2030 targets for renewable energy consumption, quota trading, distribution of effort and energy efficiency.

The revised proposal will be based on the sum of each country's national plans. If there is a gap between the total emission level and the target of 50 or 55 percent cut in 2030, the Commission will make recommendations to each country – or consider legally binding targets.

As Norway is now part of the EU mitigation it is all the more important that the Government sends Norway's plans to ESA and the Commission – and does not divulge the energy part as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the OED wants because they are afraid of precedent in the energy field. It is a poor way to exploit the room for maneuver in the EEA.

In March, an 'action plan' for the circular economy will also be presented. Likewise for the eco-design directive and a new strategy to reduce emissions from the ICT sector. There is talk of a 'renovation wave' for existing building stock as well as a strategy for facilitating new industry.

State aid rules for environment and energy needs to be revised – a work that has already come a long way. Here, previous acceptance of public support for gas infrastructure will be considered in addition to compensation for indirect CO2 costs for the industry.

In the transport sector, new requirements for both CO2 and NOx emissions from cars are coming. Road traffic shall be considered to be incorporated into ETS. New environmental and sustainability requirements will be adopted for batteries.

The Commission will no longer wait for IMO and incorporate maritime transport into ETS as well as reduce the number of free emissions allowances for aviation.

The goal, once again, is to turn 75 per cent of all freight by road and air into railways, short sea shipping and inland waterways.

The ear tag for research

30 percent of HorizonEurope's budget for the period 2021-2027 will be earmarked for Green Deal-related research. An extra half a billion euros will be set aside for the current H2020 program, announced in March 2020.

A chapter on digitization has been set aside, but has not yet been concretized. A number of initiatives to reduce emissions reductions in the agricultural sector have also been announced.

All in all; many important blows for the European and Norwegian economy will be in Brussels in the years to come.

also read "Of course Europe must take responsibility"

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Paal Frisvold
Writer for MODERN TIMES on Europe issues.

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