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Europe needs to slash its transport emissions by 94% by 2050 - Effort Sharing Regulation

A study by the respected Öko-Institut in Germany says Europe needs to slash its transport emissions by 94% by 2050. That's what it takes to avoid catastrophic 2 degree warming. Meanwhile, EU governments – particularly Italy and Poland – are trying to destroy the already inadequate target of -30% by 2030. 

Published on December 21, 2016 - 16:59

Can trade and investment policy support ambitious climate action?

Since the 1990s, international climate agreements have largely taken a country-by-country approach to mitigating climate change. However, in recent years, the conclusion of numerous bilateral or regional trade and investment agreements has led to an exponential growth in the global flows of goods and capital across borders. This growth has translated into a significant increase in emissions that cannot be bound to a single country. Thus, actions designed to tackle climate change require a new set of tools and strategies. The following joint-report offers a set of complementary options that could be implemented to tackle climate impacts.

Published on November 10, 2017 - 10:18

Public consultation on the European Environment Agency

The following document accompanies T&E’s response to the European Commission public consultation to support the evaluation of the European Environment Agency (EEA) and its European Environment Information and Observation Network (EIONET).

This short response is to be read alongside our response to the multiple choice consultation question.

Published on October 20, 2017 - 15:07

Trade and sustainable development – a chance for innovative thinking

Sustainable development has become one of the EU’s essential goals and is now a guiding principle for both its internal and external policies. As part of this ambition, the European Commission includes specific chapters on Trade and Sustainable Development in all free trade agreements (FTA) that it concludes with third country partners. Due to the controversy surrounding trade in recent years (for example, TTIP and CETA), the European Commission has started to recognise that there needs to be stronger coherence between trade and development policies. This paper looks at how the Trade and Sustainable Development chapters could play a crucial role in this.

Published on October 20, 2017 - 14:18

What is the impact of loopholes in the Effort Sharing Regulation?

This paper analyses what the impact of the Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR) text proposed by the Estonian presidency, to be discussed by EU environment ministers on 13 October 2017, will be on greenhouse gas emissions. The conclusion is clear: the proposed text is far from reaching the maximum potential that this most important European climate reform could attain. Ministers have a last opportunity to try to increase the ambition of the text, to at least match the ambition of the European Parliament. Without an ambitious ESR, the chances of the EU sticking to the Paris agreement commitments decrease considerably.

Published on October 6, 2017 - 14:32

Putting the environment at the heart of Brexit

The European Union and the United Kingdom are negotiating an agreement to ensure the UK’s orderly exit out of the Union and to agree on their future relationship. During the current Brexit negotiations, the European Commission has stated multiple times that its primary focus is on citizens and their rights and as negotiations proceed, the interests of business and market stability will be addressed. But where, then, does the environment feature? This report sets out the guiding principles for putting the environment at the heart of the Brexit talks.

Published on September 28, 2017 - 10:00

T&E's response to the Energy Taxation Directive review

The Energy Taxation Directive has not been reviewed since 2003. It needs to be updated and adapted to current circumstances. A shift towards greener taxation can (among other things) help fight climate change, reduce labour taxes and boost the economy. In this document you can read T&E’s views on how to improve the Energy Taxation Directive.

Published on September 26, 2017 - 11:58

How the EU can better align spending with its climate and energy targets

The EU’s Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) determines how EU money is spent. The current €1 trillion budget runs from 2014 to 2020 with almost €100 billion earmarked for investment in the transport sector. The current MFF Regulation states that “the Commission should present a proposal for a new multiannual financial framework before 1 January 2018”. This budget would most likely start from 2021.

Transport is the largest source of EU emissions and accounts for around a quarter of EU GHG emissions. Meanwhile air pollution from road transport contributes to over 400.000 premature deaths per year, 26.000 people die in traffic annually and the EU economy loses €100 billion every year in congestion. A large portion of the EU’s budget is currently spent on expanding road infrastructure and building up fossil fuel infrastructure (e.g. LNG terminals). A future EU budget should invest tax payers money more carefully, and prioritize investment in infrastructure that reduces the environmental impact of transport and assists member states in reaching their climate goals. In this paper T&E outlines how part of the post-2020 budget should be allocated.

Published on September 19, 2017 - 14:48