Renewable or 'low-carbon'? EU countries face off over hydrogen
EU member states are fighting over which type of hydrogen to support, with two opposing camps facing off: those backing green hydrogen produced exclusively from renewable electricity, and those in favour of a broader "low-carbon" definition, which also includes nuclear power and decarbonised gases.
G20 urges preparedness to tackle climate crisis
As Donald Trump skipped some of the key virtual meetings between G20 leaders to play golf, the European Union (EU) has called on nations to learn lessons from the coronavirus pandemic by stepping up preparedness and resiliency to tackle the climate crisis.
European Investment Bank unveils £1trn green investment plan through 2030
EU member states have approved the European Investment Bank's (EIB) plans to spend €1trn on the green economy within a decade and to ban funding for fossil fuel projects and airport expansions.
EU bank mulls ban on cash for airport expansions
The European Investment Bank (EIB) could withdraw support for new airports, according to a draft climate roadmap seen by EURACTIV. However, the bank is set to keep funding motorways, as well as approving investments under the old rules until 2022.
NGOs attack plans to include carbon offseting in EU climate goals
Environmental campaigners have condemned proposals to include carbon credits from projects in developing countries when the European Parliament votes on the EU's proposed climate law next week.
'We can do it!': EU chief announces 55% emissions reduction target for 2030
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has confirmed plans to target a 55% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 as part of a broader European Green Deal programme aimed at reaching "climate neutrality" by mid-century.
Carbon prices to climb 50% over next decade following raised EU climate targets
Carbon prices across the European Union (EU) could increase by more than 50% over the next decade, with the bloc's proposed 55% reduction in emissions set to shape renewables and fossil fuel markets in the long-run, according to new analysis from the Refinitiv Carbon Research team.
Business and investor giants urge EU to raise 2030 emissions target
More than 150 businesses and a group of investors with €33trn in assets under management have today (15 September) called on the European Union (EU) to back the ambitions set out in its Green Deal by committing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030.
EU lawmakers up the ante, vote for 60% climate target for 2030
The European Parliament's environment committee has voted for a new EU-wide target to reduce carbon emissions 60% by 2030, setting the stage for tough negotiations with EU countries and the European Commission, which is expected to propose a 55% goal next week. EURACTIV Germany reports.
EU to launch raw materials industry alliance
The European Commission will announce the launch of a new industry alliance this week, with a view to building a complete EU supply chain for raw materials like lithium, which are seen as critical for the bloc's digital and green transitions.
EU invests €350m in first domestic battery gigafactory
The European Investment Bank issued a €350 million loan on Thursday (30 July) to a Swedish company that hopes to corner a significant share of the global battery market by building the "greenest" power packs available.
UK targets 65% municipal waste recycling rates under EU's circular economy package
The UK Government has today (30 July) agreed to transpose aspects of the European Union's Circular Economy Package into UK law, agreeing on targets to recycle 65% of household waste by 2035 and to allow a maximum of 10% municipal waste going to landfill in the same timeframe.
Lack of trust could derail EU UK environment agreement
A group of MPs has urged the UK Government to overcome barriers to enshrining strong environmental legislation as part of trade agreements with the European Union (EU), warning that a lack of trust between the two parties could derail a common goal to combat the climate crisis.
Coronavirus: EU's recovery deal lacking climate spending accountability, green groups warn
Following four nights of negotiations, the European Union (EU) has agreed its biggest joint borrowing plan ever recorded, pledging €750bn to a coronavirus recovery package, but green groups have expressed concerns that focus and accountability on green spending have "taken a battering".
Gas grid operators unveil plan for 'backbone' of Europe's hydrogen infrastructure
A group of eleven European gas infrastructure companies from nine EU member states have presented plans to create a dedicated hydrogen pipeline network of almost 23,000 km by 2040, to be used in parallel to the natural gas grid.
EU hydrogen strategy: Bloc charts path towards 100% renewable hydrogen
The European Commission unveiled plans to promote hydrogen based entirely on renewable electricity like wind and solar, but said low-carbon hydrogen derived from fossil fuels will also be supported in order to scale up production in the short term.
Green building advocates 'underwhelmed' by EU recovery plan
When the European Commission unveiled its proposed €750bn recovery fund two weeks ago, green activists were expecting a detailed spending programme, with billions of euros allocated to clean mobility, renewables, and an upcoming EU-wide building renovation wave. Those working in the built environment space have, however, expressed disappointment.
Corporate clean energy sourcing must form part of green Covid-19 recovery, dozens of businesses tell policymakers
Mars, Nestle, and IKEA owner Ingka Group are among a coalition of more than 50 major businesses calling on EU leaders to build the business sourcing of renewables into the bloc's Covid-19 stimulus package, hailed globally as "green".
Investors worth €11trn call for European green recovery from Covid-19 pandemic
More than 100 investors have written to European business and finance leaders, calling on them to ensure the delivering of the bloc-wide Green Deal and deliver a green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
EU urged not to mess with UN aviation rules
Leading MEPs have asked the European Commission and Council not to seek changes to the UN's global aviation scheme, which is aimed at making the industry carbon neutral. Airlines have requested more leeway to ride out the coronavirus outbreak slump.
Coronavirus: EU's €750bn recovery fund to funnel investments towards climate action
The European Union's proposed €750bn fund to help the bloc recover from the coronavirus crisis will have green strings attached, with 25% of all funding set aside for climate action, the European Commission has said.
Europe's draft 'green recovery' plan leaked
The European Commission's promised green recovery plan will focus on building renovation, renewables and hydrogen as well as clean mobility and the circular economy, according to a leaked working document obtained by EURACTIV.
Beware of jobs vs. climate clash in virus aftermath, EU warned
Governments in Europe and beyond should pay "utmost attention" to avoid a "jobs versus climate" confrontation in the recovery phase from the COVID-19 crisis, said Fatih Birol, the executive director of the International Energy Agency (IEA).
More than one million citizens back calls for EU green investments to spur Covid-19 recovery
More than 100 environmental NGOs and one million European citizens have joined the calls for the European Union (EU) to stimulate the economy through massive green investment efforts.
EU lawmaker puts 65% emissions cut on the table
The European Parliament is gearing up for tough talks on the EU's climate target for 2030, with a 65% emissions cut now firmly on the table.
Messages of hope: How world leaders are rallying for a green Covid-19 recovery
The two-day Petersberg Climate Dialogue finished yesterday evening, with ministerial leaders from the UK, Germany, the EU and the UN all delivering rallying cries for nations to focus on climate mitigation as part of any efforts to stimulate the economic downturned caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
EU's climate strategy can spur 'just' and resilient labour market
On the eve of the release of the EU's recovery strategy, a group of business leaders have called for the bloc's climate-neutral target to be coupled with a "just transition" that could deliver job growth against future climate, demographic and technological megatrends.
European Commission promises green recovery to EU lawmakers
The European Commission's Green Deal chief, Frans Timmermans, assured EU lawmakers that "every euro" spent on economic recovery measures after the COVID-19 crisis would be linked to the green and digital transitions. EURACTIV Germany reports.
Innovation and collaboration are vital for the success of plastics in the circular economy
As reported by edie, the European Commission unveiled its new Circular Economy Action Plan in March this year. The new plan outlined a sweeping set of commitments aimed at ensuring that circularity and resource efficiency act as a "prerequisite for climate neutrality" in line with the European Green Deal and Industrial Strategy.
Airlines, automakers and fossil fuel firms blasted as 'coronavirus climate profiteers'
A new report has blasted the lobbying efforts of the airline, automaker, fossil fuel and logging industries, claiming that organisations are attempting to benefit from billion-pound bailouts in response to the coronavirus that enables them to carry on with climate-wrecking business practices.
EU dismisses industry calls to lift ban on single-use plastics
Deadlines have to be respected, says the European Commission in response to calls by industry to lift an EU-wide ban on some single-use plastic items because of health and hygiene concerns raised during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Coronavirus: Business leaders join European Green Recovery alliance
Business members of the European Corporate Leaders Group (CLG Europe) have joined the European Parliament, policymakers and NGOs in forming an alliance for a "green recovery" of the European economy that assists with the ongoing fight against the climate crisis.
EU says green finance will be 'key focus' of post-virus recovery phase
As European countries fight the coronavirus pandemic, they "must not lose sight" of the EU's climate neutrality objective, the European Commission reminded on Wednesday (8 April).
Carmakers accused of trying to use coronavirus crisis to avert EU emissions crackdown
The motor industry has been accused by campaigners of trying to use the coronavirus crisis to avert stricter environmental regulation, after correspondence showed carmakers had lobbied the EU to defer impending laws.
EU leaders back 'green transition' in coronavirus recovery plan
While attention continues to focus on the urgent health aspects of the COVID-19 outbreak, EU leaders have called on the European Commission to start preparing "a comprehensive recovery plan" that integrates green and digital aspects.
EU exploring cost-benefit of 55% emissions cut by 2030
In the middle of the Covid 19 outbreak, the European Commission published last week what would have otherwise been a high-profile initiative: the launch of a cost-benefit analysis of increasing the EU's climate ambition for 2030 in view of reaching net-zero emissions by mid-century.
Green Deal facing delays due to coronavirus, EU admits
The European Commission is having to re-order its priorities in the face of the coronavirus crisis, with "non-essential" initiatives like the biodiversity strategy and the farm-to-fork strategy likely to be delayed by several weeks.
Greenpeace proposes 70% meat consumption reduction by 2030
Three burgers a week: that's the maximum amount of meat Europeans should get used to eating, according to NGO Greenpeace, which has been looking at Europe's eating habits. EURACTIV France reports.
Everything you need to know about the EU's new Circular Economy Action Plan and Industrial Strategy
The European Commission has today (11 March) unveiled its Circular Economy Action Plan, a sweeping set of commitments aimed at ensuring that circularity and resources efficiency acts as a "prerequisite for climate neutrality" in line with the European Green Deal and Industrial Strategy.
Corporate leaders want decarbonisation as central focus for Europe's Industrial Strategy
Business giants including Unilever, Interface, and Coca-Cola have called for the new European Industrial Strategy to focus heavily on decarbonisation in a way that sets out clear strategies for investment into low-carbon solutions and provides price incentives for new goods and services.
EU debuts climate law 'compass', Greta dismisses it as 'surrender'
The European Commission officially unveiled its Climate Law on Wednesday (4 March), aimed at making the EU carbon neutral by 2050. But Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg criticised the plan as a "surrender".
Stage set for EU-UK tussle over green credentials
Trade talks between the EU and the UK start next week, with thorny issues like state aid and fish set to complicate matters. A fight brewing over environmental standards may make an agreement by year's end even more difficult to come by.
RBS's climate goals and Aldi's plastic bag crackdown: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
EU starts to chart shipping's new green course
The shipping industry will soon have to pay for its environmental impact in the EU, as both the European Commission and Parliament are moving forward with plans to include vessels in the bloc's flagship carbon market. But there are choppy waters ahead.
Sector coupling: Electrification of transport and buildings could slash emissions by 60%
Mass-Scale electrification of the transport, buildings and industrial sectors could enable Europe to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 60% over the next 30 years, according to a new report published today by research company BloombergNEF (BNEF).
EU lawmakers voice support for meat tax to cover environmental costs of livestock
A new report commissioned by the Dutch True Animal Protein Price Coalition (TAPP) suggests that retail price of meat does not reflect the environmental costs associated with its production, and calls for a "sustainability charge" on meat.
Worcester and London universities to trial sustainable diets behaviour change programme
Students at the University of Worcester, City and the University of London will take part in a new European trial designed to change behaviours and promote sustainable diets and climate-friendly meals.
EU unveils €100bn fund for 'just' low-carbon transition - which excludes nuclear
The EU's regional policy Commissioner Elisa Ferreira revealed on Tuesday (14 January) details of the €100 billion Just Transition Mechanism, a key financial component of the European Green Deal that should make the bloc climate neutral by 2050.
Massive rise in EV charging points needed to reach EU climate goals, analysis finds
Europe needs a fifteen-fold increase in electric vehicle public charging points by 2030 to support the EU's goal of becoming "climate neutral" by mid-century, according to new research published Wednesday (8 January).
EU 'confident' €100bn green transition fund will come to fruition
A draft €100bn "Just Transition Mechanism" outlined by the European Commission as part of its Green Deal last week will eventually see the light in January, EU officials have said. The amount of "fresh money" under the new fund is, however, expected to be limited.
Europe's 'man on the moon moment': Green Deal to create world's first climate-neutral continent
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has unveiled 50 sweeping plans to enable the EU to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, claiming that the Green Deal was "more than just a vision, it is a roadmap for action".
EU reaches milestone by agreeing on green criteria for finance
MEPs and the Finnish presidency of the EU Council have agreed on a taxonomy to determine what economic activities can be considered 'green', paving the way for billions of euros to be invested to fight climate change.
'Set legally binding net-zero target now', investors urge EU leaders
A coalition of more than 40 investors collectively representing upwards of €6trn of assets under management has written to all EU heads of state, urging them to set legislation in line with net-zero by 2050 or sooner.
Europe's environment 'at a tipping point', EU agency says
Europe faces environmental challenges "of unprecedented scale and urgency," according to a comprehensive overview of air, land and water ecosystems published on Wednesday (4 December) by the European Environment Agency.
Europe becomes first continent to declare a 'climate emergency'
MEPs voted to pass a resolution declaring a 'climate emergency' on Thursday evening (28 November), making the European Parliament the first body representing a continent to do so.
Business giants called for raised EU climate targets
Business giants including Unilever, Interface, and Coca-Cola European Partners have signed a joint statement calling for the European Union to raise emission reduction targets for 2030, in order to remain on course for carbon-neutrality by 2050.
Report: EU set to miss all 17 Sustainable Development Goals
Almost every nation within the EU is failing to deliver the amount of progress needed for the bloc to meet any of the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with a "major" lack of progress recorded against SDG 13, Climate Action.
'Broad support' for EU-wide plastic tax
A European tax on plastic waste is gaining momentum as a way to bring new sources of revenue to the EU budget as leaders prepare for a two-day summit in Brussels beginning today (17 October).
EU Council maintains nuclear as eligible for 'green' finance
EU ministers have decided not to exclude nuclear projects from being eligible for sustainable finance grants, despite the demands of a group of member states and the European Parliament.
Green Deal branded 'hallmark' of new European Commission
"I want the European Green Deal to become Europe's hallmark," said European Commission President-elect Ursula von der Leyen, as she tasked her second-in-command with overseeing Europe's goal of achieving climate neutrality by mid-century.
EU countries have 'no concrete plans' to phase out fossil fuel subsidies: report
Not a single EU member state has so far spelled out a comprehensive plan to phase out fossil fuel subsidies, despite a commitment taken at the G20 ten years ago to eliminate them, according to a fresh analysis of the bloc's 28 National Energy and Climate Plans.
EU auto industry forms unlikely alliance with NGO on electric cars
Long-time adversaries Transport & Environment and ACEA have signed a partnership to accelerate the roll-out of electric vehicle charging points, as the auto industry seeks to rebrand with a focus on digital and electric.
EU paper recyclers 'in crisis' as China waste import ban bites
China's ban on waste imports has thrown Europe's paper recycling sector "in a crisis situation," leading to a chronic oversupply of recovered paper that sent prices plummeting by 300% over the past two years, according to trade group EuRIC.
EU banks launch €10bn circular economy funding pot
Five major banks located and operating within the European Union (EU) have agreed to work with the European Investment Bank (EIB) on a €10bn initiative to promote circular economy projects.
Official EU petition calls for minimum carbon price
The European Commission has registered an official petition that calls on the EU executive to set up a minimum carbon price, "discourage the consumption of fossil fuels" and keep global warming to below 1.5C.
EU leftists demand 'climate emergency' Parliament committee
The European Parliament's leftist group (GUE/NGL) has proposed setting up a special climate emergency parliamentary committee to shift the spotlight on to green issues even more over the next five years.
New EU framework to help firms measure and disclose climate risks and impacts
The European Commission has published a new framework aimed at helping corporates and investors to calculate and disclose their climate-related risks and impacts, in a bid to help accelerate financial support for the low-carbon transition.
UK climate plan unclear, European Commission claims
A British government climate action plan is "unclear" and lacks key details about how the UK will reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the next 12 years, the European commission has said.
UK looks set to host COP26 in partnership with Italy
The UK has formally proposed its intention to host next year's international COP climate conference as part of a partnership with Italy that will see the latter host a pre-COP event.
18 EU countries now support 2050 carbon neutrality goal
Germany, Greece, Italy and Slovakia have added their names to a growing list of EU countries supporting a carbon neutrality objective for 2050, increasing the chances that a deal will be struck at an EU summit later this week, according to documents seen by EURACTIV.
Climate becomes top priority in EU's 2020 budget
The European Commission proposed on Wednesday (5 June) a budget worth €168.3bn for the bloc in 2020, aimed at promoting a more competitive European economy and solidarity and security in the EU. This is the last budget under the 2014-2020 fiscal period and put climate change at the top of the agenda.
Merkel sends first strong message for climate neutrality by 2050
Chancellor Angela Merkel has indicated for the first time that Germany may join a European alliance to achieve greenhouse gas neutrality by 2050. At a recent EU summit, Germany was unwilling to join a similar initiative by nine EU member states.
Juncker insists 2030 climate target is EU's top priority, not 2050 'net-zero' plan
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has said that the EU should "concentrate on immediate and urgent" climate policies for 2030 rather than a proposed 2050 target defended by eight EU countries to reach net-zero emissions.
Jet fuel must be taxed, EU citizens insist
Aeroplane fuel's tax-free status could soon be grounded after the European Commission agreed this week to register an official petition that calls for an end to kerosene's exemption.
Business leaders call for EU net-zero target
The chief executives from more than 50 businesses, including Ikea, Unilever, Heathrow Airport and Interface have called on the European Union (EU) to create a long-term decarbonisation roadmap for a net-zero economy by 2050.
Forget Brexit and focus on climate change, Greta Thunberg tells EU
The teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg has chided EU leaders for holding three emergency summits on Brexit and none on the threat posed by climate change.
European Commission teases carbon tax and nuclear treaty overhaul
The European Commission has made the case for scrapping national vetoes on environmental tax changes and for finally updating the bloc's venerable nuclear treaty, last amended in 1957.
Report: Failure to implement clean air laws cost EU €24bn in 2018
By failing to meet targets and regulations set out in EU environmental laws, Member States collectively cost the bloc's economy almost €55bn last year, a new report from the European Commission's Directorate General for the Environment has found.
European parliament votes to ban single-use plastics
The European parliament has voted to ban single-use plastic cutlery, cotton buds, straws and stirrers as part of a sweeping law against plastic waste that despoils beaches and pollutes oceans.
EU on track for 50% emission cuts by 2030, study says
While Germany and Eastern European countries continue to oppose raising the EU's 40% emission reduction target for 2030, a new analysis insists the bloc will actually manage at least 50% cuts under a business-as-usual scenario taking into account the latest coal phase-out pledges.
Brexit eclipses climate talks in leaked EU summit draft
EU heads of states are expected to reiterate earlier commitments on climate action when they meet in Brussels later this week, despite growing calls from youths across Europe to step up the fight against global warming, according to a draft EU summit statement seen by EURACTIV.
Study charts six scenarios for fossil-free energy by 2050
Cutting energy use in buildings, ramping up renewable electricity and developing large-scale storage with hydrogen are clear options in bringing energy emissions down to zero by 2050, according to a new study.
European lawsuit on biomass rules threatens Drax plant
A coalition of environmental campaigners has launched a court bid to stop the European Commission treating forest grown wood as a renewable source of energy.
Five EU countries call for 100% renewable energy by 2050
The European Union's 28 energy ministers had their first public debate on the European Commission's 2050 climate plan on Monday (4 March) but five member states derided the lack of a 100% renewable energy scenario among the EU executive's proposed options.
Palm oil: Certified but NOT sustainable
Last month, Jonathon Porritt stated in his edie blog that the intent of the Changing Markets Foundation was to 'undermine the creditability of certification schemes' without suggesting alternatives. As the Foundation's campaign's director, I was surprised by this accusation and feel compelled to provide my own response.
Europe agrees sales targets for 'clean' buses in cities
European Union lawmakers struck an agreement on Monday (11 February) on green public procurement rules for new buses, requiring local authorities purchase a minimum share of clean vehicles running on gas or electricity by 2025 and 2030.
Hundreds of EU stakeholders call for a 'common food policy'
A coalition of 400 agriculture-related EU stakeholders, convened by the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES-Food), has mapped out a new governance architecture for food systems in a bid to create sustainable food systems under a 'Common Food Policy'.
MEPs locked in dispute over EU's climate plan
European lawmakers are locked in a dispute over a landmark climate plan that is meant to drag the EU into compliance with the Paris Agreement, as parliamentary committees tussle over who should take the lead.
UK revealed as EU champion of fossil fuel subsidies
The UK spends the most of any EU nation on subsidising fossil fuels, according to a new report by the European Commission, which also found that EU-wide payments have failed to decrease despite the bloc's commitment to the Paris Agreement on climate change.
EU forges deal on coal phase-out, with special Polish clause
European Union legislators reached agreement in the early hours of Wednesday (19 December) over a proposed reform of electricity market rules that includes a 2025 cut-off date for coal subsidies, and a special clause for Poland.
New EU plan comes out fighting for 'climate neutrality' by 2050
The European Commission has unveiled its much-anticipated plan for a "climate-neutral Europe" on Wednesday (28 November), in an effort to show EU countries how to stick to the goals of the Paris Agreement and endorse a shared long-term strategy.
10 countries demand net-zero emission goal in new EU climate strategy
Ministers from ten EU countries have urged the European Commission to chart a "credible and detailed" path towards net-zero emissions in 2050, ahead of the launch of a landmark climate strategy next week.
Spain targets 100% renewable power by 2050
Spain's government has published a new climate plan that targets a 100% renewable energy electricity system by 2050, with goals that outstrip those adopted by the EU and a ban on new gas and oil exploration.
EU approves more ambitious renewables target, commits to palm oil phase-out
The European Parliament has voted to approve a set of new clean energy laws for 2030, outlining plans to increase the bloc's use of renewable energy and ban the sale of high-emission biofuels made from palm and soybean oil.
All financial institutions must disclose sustainability risks and impacts, MEPs agreed
The European Parliament's Committee of Economic and Monetary Affairs has endorsed a decision that makes it mandatory for all financial market participants, including banks, to disclose sustainability risks and impacts of their portfolio, a move that NGOs say brings the EU one step further in greening its financial system.
European parliament approves sweeping ban on single-use plastics
The European Parliament has overwhelmingly backed a wide-ranging ban on single-use plastics in an effort to tackle pollution in seas, fields and waterways.
'Disappointed' EU capitals agree on 35% car CO2 cuts
EU environment ministers took until nearly midnight on Tuesday (9 October) to agree on a common position for car and van CO2 emission cuts for 2030 but several member states were left "disappointed" with the final agreement.
European Parliament revs up CO2 car limits
MEPs voted in Strasbourg on Wednesday (3 October) in favour of a 40% CO2 reduction target for light vehicles by 2030. The target is higher than that which the Commission has proposed and tough talks with national capitals now loom large on the horizon.
EU must end new petrol and diesel car sales by 2030 to meet climate targets - report
New petrol and diesel car sales in Europe must be phased out before 2030 if the auto sector is to play its part in holding global warming to the Paris agreement's 1.5C goal, a new analysis has found.
Truck makers push back against EU's first ever CO2 limits
The European Commission's proposal to mandate a 15% cut in CO2 emission from trucks by 2025 is overly ambitious, according to industry association ACEA, which said a 7% objective would be more "realistic" given the technologies currently available.