The EU Green Deal and Climate Law

In December 2019, EU leaders agreed that Europe should achieve climate-neutrality by 2050. At the same time, the European Commission launched the EU Green Deal, a comprehensive policy package to put the EU on a path to reach this goal. 

One of the first legislative proposals following the Green Deal, the EU Climate Law enshrines the goal of reaching climate neutrality by 2050 into legislation. Part of this law is also the increase of the 2030 greenhouse gas emission reduction target from the current 40% to at least 55%. But the new law includes the possibility of using carbon sinks by forests and land to reach the target. This could mean real cuts in emissions of only 50.5-52.8%.

For the EU to do its fair share to reach the Paris climate targets, it should aim to be carbon-neutral by 2040. This means that the 2030 climate target should be 65%.

Reaching climate neutrality implies significant changes to existing policies, governance structures, land use and infrastructure, production methods, finance needs, and lifestyles. 

Carbon Market Watch calls for the EU to adopt strong climate policies such as the EU Emissions Trading System and the Effort Sharing Regulation in order to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 65% over this decade.