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Eight EU Countries Will Demand Decarbonization By 2050 At Sibiu Summit

Kategori : ENERGY AGENDA NEWS, ENERGY EFFICIENCY NEWS - Tarih : 16 May 2019

A planned ‘Future of Europe’ summit of European Union national leaders starting in Sibiu, Romania tomorrow was supposed to chart a course for the EU following Brexit. Instead, with Brexit delayed and in doubt, the summit will be marked by a fierce debate over the EU’s ambition on fighting climate change. And the “b-word” has been banned.

Eight of the 28 EU countries have circulated a paper to national capitals ahead of the summit, leaked to the press, demanding that the bloc commit to phasing out carbon emissions by 2050 and dedicating 25% of the EU’s next long-term budget to projects fighting climate change.

The paper is signed by France, Spain, Belgium, Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Sweden.

The paper also says the bloc should rapidly integrate its fragmented energy market. “A well-functioning and more integrated internal energy market will be key to the energy security in every region,” it reads. “The optimal use of existing infrastructure and the development of a more interconnected energy market are important tools to this end.”

Franco-German Climate Fight

But not everyone agrees. The European Commission put forward last year a proposal suggesting to lower emissions down to ‘net zero’ – a roughly 95% reduction with the remaining 5% made up for by funding emissions reduction outside Europe – by 2050. But the plan needs to be approved by all 28 EU member states, and while France’s Emmanuel Macron enthusiastically supports it, Germany’s Angela Merkel is more sceptical. Paris and Berlin clashed over the 2050 plan at a March European Council summit in Brussels, and it is set for a vote at the next summit in June.

However the eight pro-decarbonization countries want the leaders to agree to the plan’s headline 2050 target earlier, at this week’s Sibiu summit. “To create a positive momentum, the EU must make ambitious announcements during the Sibiu Summit, preferably on setting a target for the EU to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 at the latest, and on the principle of enhancing the ambition of its current NDC by 2020,” they write.

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