EU Commission analysis shows increased ambition will benefit Europe’s economy
- 01 February 2012
BRUSSELS: According to an analysis published by the European Commission yesterday, increasing the EU emissions reduction target to 30% by 2020 would bring significant economic, environmental and health benefits for all member states.
The analysis had been requested by EU Environmental Ministers in order to assess how increased ambition would affect individual member states, providing a more solid basis for ongoing discussions about future EU climate policy.
The results shows that a 30% climate target could reduce the EU’s fossil fuel expenses by EUR 31.3 billion annually between 2016 and 2020, bring down the cost of pollution control by EUR 3.6 billion, and provide health benefits worth between EUR 3.3 and EUR 7.6 billion annually in the same period.
The paper presents a number of compensatory mechanisms by which investment costs to poorer Central and Eastern European countries would be reduced to a minimum, particularly through the positive revenue effects of rising carbon prices.
However, the analysis also reiterates the crucial role of a well-functioning carbon market; fixing the European Emissions Trading System and removing excess emissions allowances is a prerequisite for sending stable market signals and triggering the low carbon investments needed.
“This analysis is an important contribution towards rationalizing the European climate debate,” says Luc Bas, Director of European Programmes, The Climate Group. “It clearly shows there is no reason to stall progress towards more ambition, but that there are many very tangible benefits to be gained for all member states. We know the way forward, and these insights should be translated into concrete legislative proposals as soon as possible.”
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