“Solutions to reach net-zero by 2040 exist, but political courage to match the scale of the challenges currently does not. With the end of the Net Zero Industry Act trilogue, policy-makers diluted the scale-up of existing technologies into a techno-optimist vision of industrial policy, far from the initial objective to support the EU’s climate targets” – Boris Jankowiak, Steel Transformation Policy Coordinator

In 2023, both the Industrial Emissions Directive and the Ecodesign of Sustainable Products Regulation were concluded. These two policies addressed complementary sides of the industrial transformation: on the design of products so that sustainable products become the norm, and on production processes to reduce impacts at source.

During the year, CAN Europe also reacted to the untargeted Net Zero Industry Act. From the outset this was flawed since it supported heavy industry’s approach of technological decarbonisation which ultimately drives up energy material needs while avoiding demand-side management measures. By working together with other civil society organisations, CAN Europe was able to also bring in these messages to the debate on the Critical Raw Materials Act.

Finally, the CAMPAIGNers project was influential and work continued to focus on demand-side management – especially in the context of the development of Nationally Determined Contributions – with a statement to COP, an informal dinner held with government representatives at the Bonn preparation meeting, and a COP side event to discuss behavioural change with government representatives. This was the first time CAN Europe brought these particular messages to this arena.