The European Commission has presented The European Green Deal – a roadmap for making the EU’s economy sustainable by turning climate and environmental challenges into opportunities across all policy areas and making the transition just and inclusive for all
In it a wide range of policies are set out, including a determination to drive much greater use of renewable energy and decarbonise the energy sector.
In the European Green Deal document, the Commission said, “Renewable energy sources will have an essential role. Increasing offshore wind production will be essential, building on regional co-operation between member states.
“The smart integration of renewables, energy efficiency and other sustainable solutions across sectors will help to achieve decarbonisation at the lowest possible cost. The rapid decrease in the cost of renewables, combined with improved design of support policies, has already reduced the impact on households’ energy bills of renewables deployment.”
The document said a European strategy for offshore wind will be published in 2020.
President Ursula von der Leyen said, “The European Green Deal is our new growth strategy – for growth that gives back more than it takes away. It shows how to transform our way of living and working, of producing and consuming so that we live healthier and make our businesses innovative. We can all be involved in the transition and we can all benefit from the opportunities. We will help our economy to be a global leader by moving first and moving fast. We are determined to succeed for the sake of this planet and life on it – for Europe’s natural heritage, for biodiversity, for our forests and our seas. By showing the rest of the world how to be sustainable and competitive, we can convince other countries to move with us.”
Executive vice president Frans Timmermans said, “We are in a climate and environmental emergency. The European Green Deal is an opportunity to improve the health and well-being of our people by transforming our economic model. Our plan sets out how to cut emissions, restore the health of our natural environment, protect our wildlife, create new economic opportunities, and improve the quality of life of our citizens. We all have an important part to play and every industry and country will be part of this transformation. Moreover, our responsibility is to make sure this transition is a just transition, and that nobody is left behind as we deliver the European Green Deal.”
The European Green Deal provides a roadmap with actions to boost the efficient use of resources by moving to a clean, circular economy and stop climate change, revert biodiversity loss and cut pollution. It outlines investments needed and financing tools available and explains how to ensure a just and inclusive transition. It covers all sectors of the economy, notably transport, energy, agriculture, buildings, and industries such as steel, cement, ICT, textiles and chemicals.
Meeting the objectives of the European Green Deal will require significant investment. Achieving the current 2030 climate and energy targets is estimated to require €260Bn (US$288Bn) of additional annual investment, representing about 1.5% of 2018 GDP. This investment will need the mobilisation of the public and private sectors. The Commission will present in early 2020 a Sustainable Europe Investment Plan to help meet investment needs. At least 25% of the EU’s long-term budget should be dedicated to climate action, and the European Investment Bank, Europe’s climate bank, will provide further support. For the private sector to contribute to financing the green transition, the Commission will present a Green Financing Strategy in 2020.