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26 May, 2024
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EU Parliament votes to reduce member states’ emissions by 40%

EU adopts revised law to Increase greenhouse gas reduction targets

Today, the European Parliament adopted the revision of the Effort Sharing Regulation with 486 votes in favor, 132 against, and 10 abstentions. The regulation sets binding annual reductions for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in various sectors, including road transport, heating of buildings, agriculture, small industrial installations, and waste management, for each EU member state. Currently, it regulates roughly 60% of all EU emissions.

The revised law increases the 2030 GHG reduction target at the EU level from 30% to 40% compared to 2005 levels. For the first time, all EU countries must now reduce GHG emissions, with targets ranging between 10% and 50%. The 2030 targets for each member state are based on GDP per capita and cost-effectiveness. Member states will also have to ensure every year that they do not exceed their annual GHG emission allocation.

According to rapporteur Jessica Polfjärd (EPP, SV), "With this law, we take a major step forward in delivering on the EU's climate goals. The new rules for national emission cuts ensure that all member states contribute and that existing loopholes are closed. This allows us to send a clear signal that the EU is serious about being the global champion for a competitive and efficient climate agenda."

The law aims to strike a balance between the need for EU countries to be flexible in achieving their targets while ensuring a just and socially fair transition, and the need to close loopholes so that the overall EU reduction target is met. There are limits on how much emissions member states can save from previous years, and borrow from future years, as well as on how much they can trade allocations with other member states.

To ensure member states are accountable, the Commission will make information public on national actions in an easily accessible form, as requested by Parliament.

The next step is for the text to be formally endorsed by the Council. It will then be published in the EU Official Journal and enter into force 20 days later.

The Effort Sharing Regulation is part of the "Fit for 55 in 2030 package," the EU's plan to reduce GHG emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels in line with the European Climate Law.

[With information from Euro Parliament News]

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