What is happening in plenary with regards to climate ambition?
The negotiations on key climate files of the Fit For 55 package which was launched by the European Commission in July 2021, are approaching critical moments. On 7 June (tbc), the European Parliament plenary will vote on the reports for the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS), including the proposal for a new Emissions Trading System for road transport and buildings (ETS2), the Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR) and the Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) Regulation.
Why are these votes relevant for the EU’s climate ambition?
We are still amidst a climate and environmental emergency (In 2019, the European Parliament passed a resolution on climate and environmental emergency, underlining the urgency to adopt legislation in line with the 1.5°C target of the Paris Agreement). The current course of the EU to further increase its climate ambition is vitally important to keep the goals of the Paris Agreement in reach and protect people from climate disaster (Extreme weather events such as heatwaves and floods have cost Europe almost 510 billion euros and around 142,000 lives over the past 40 years). Particularly in light of the ongoing invasion of Ukraine by Russia and the increased urgency to accelerate the shift away from fossil fuel dependency, a strong EU climate policy framework is essential to ensure that measures considered and taken are compatible with global efforts to fight dangerous climate change.
The three files that will be voted on in plenary (ETS, ESR and LULUCF) implement the EU’s climate target for 2030, the bloc’s nationally determined contribution (NDC) to achieve the temperature goals of the Paris Agreement. The target was adopted by the European Council in December 2020 and foresees economy-wide net emission reductions of at least -55% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels.