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A landmark moment for the EU: Commission welcomes provisional agreement on the Climate Law

The European Commission has welcomed today’s provisional agreement between the co-legislators on the European Climate Law.

As one of the key elements of the European Green Deal, the European Climate Law enshrines the EU’s commitment to reaching climate neutrality by 2050 and the intermediate target of reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 per cent by 2030, compared to 1990 levels.

“I am delighted that we have reached an agreement on this core element of the European Green Deal,” said President Ursula von der Leyen. “Our political commitment to becoming the first climate-neutral continent by 2050 is now also a legal commitment. The Climate Law sets the EU on a green path for a generation. It is our binding pledge to our children and grandchildren.”

“This is a landmark moment for the EU,” added Executive Vice-President for the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermans. “We have reached an ambitious agreement to write our climate neutrality target into binding legislation, as a guide to our policies for the next 30 years. The Climate Law will shape the EU’s green recovery and ensure a socially just green transition. Today’s agreement also reinforces our global position as a leader in tackling the climate crisis. When world leaders gather on Earth Day, the EU will come to the table with this positive news, which we hope will inspire our international partners. This is a good day for our people and our planet.”

In addition to the 2050 climate neutrality target, today’s deal strengthens the European framework for climate action by introducing an ambitious 2030 climate target of at least 55 per cent reduction of net emissions as compared to 1990, with clarity on the contribution of emission reductions and removals. Also recognition of the need to enhance the EU’s carbon sink through a more ambitious LULUCF regulation, for which the Commission will make proposals in June 2021. Furthermore, it includes a process for setting a 2040 climate target, taking into account an indicative greenhouse gas budget for 2030-2050 to be published by the Commission.

It also establishes the European Scientific Advisory Board on Climate Change, which will provide independent scientific advice. Importantly, the document also includes stronger provisions on adaptation to climate change and a commitment to engage with sectors to prepare sector-specific roadmaps charting the path to climate neutrality in different areas of the economy.

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