International Affairs

European Climate Law

The European Council (EU) has unveiled the proposal to set in legislation the objective of a climate-neutral EU by 2050, which was endorsed by the European Council in December 2019. The EU announced that it is firmly committed to becoming climate neutral by 2050. While the European Council has announced that it will return to the greenhouse gas emissions reduction target for 2030 at its December meeting with a view to agreeing on a new target.
 
What’s EU?
The European Union is a political and economic union of 27 member states that are located primarily in Europe. The EU has developed an internal single market through a standardised system of laws that apply in all member states in those matters, and only those matters, where members have agreed to act as one. EU policies aim to ensure the free movement of people, goods, services and capital within the internal market; enact legislation in justice and home affairs; and maintain common policies on trade, agriculture, fisheries and regional development. The European Union was formally established when the Maastricht Treaty - whose main architects were Helmut Kohl and François Mitterrand – and came into force on 1 November 1993. 
 
Climate Law objectives:
·The EU's and the member states’ climate action aims to protect people and the planet, welfare, prosperity, health, food systems, the integrity of eco-systems and biodiversity against the threat of climate change, to maximise prosperity within the planetary boundaries and to increase resilience and reduce vulnerability of society to climate change.
·According to the European Environment Agency and its latest available data, by 2019 the EU had reduced its overall greenhouse gas emissions by 24% compared to 1990 levels.
·EU is set to surpass its 2020 emission reduction target of 20%. 
·In addition it has currently in place a binding target of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030.
·The EU in its conclusions of 12 December 2019, agreed on the objective of achieving a climate-neutral EU by 2050, in line with the objectives of the Paris Agreement, while also recognising that it is necessary to put in place an enabling framework that benefits all member states and encompasses adequate instruments.
·On 4 March 2020, the Commission adopted its proposal for a European climate law and presented it to ministers at the Environment Council on 5 March 2020
·On 17 September 2020, the Commission published a communication on the 2030 climate target plan, accompanied by a comprehensive impact assessment.
 
The goal imply achieving net zero emissions for EU countries as a whole, mainly by cutting emissions, investing in green technologies and protecting the natural environment. The act will ensure that all EU policies contribute to this goal and that all sectors of the economy and society play their part.



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