The European Illusion

22 October 2015

Delegates, you well know that ECO has lamented, time and time again, that the EU’s reduction targets for 2020 and 2030 are inadequate, below business as usual, and in general an embarrassment to the continent that once was the leader in global climate action.

This week’s news from the European Environment Agency has again proven our point: the latest EU numbers show that greenhouse gas emission fell 4% between 2013 and 2014. This brings the EU’s domestic emissions down to 23% below 1990 levels, and will most likely lead to below 30% by 2020. ECO reminds delegates that the EU’s current 2020 reduction commitment is 20% below 1990.

Done. Many years ahead of time.

“What should the EU do now?” you may ask. As far as ECO can see, the only action the EU is taking in response is to engage in self-praise and nothing more. We all know that there is more to be done, so, EU, listen up:

  • Commit to implementing your conditional 30% by 2020 target (which will happen without any extra effort).
  • Cancel the vast surplus of emission allowances weighing down your carbon market to ensure that the 2030 target will not be made meaningless with carry-over of old reductions.
  • Do more! We need to phase-out global emissions by 2050 and the EU could be the ones to lead the way.

The European Illusion

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