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CLG responds to European Council pledge to build climate neutral EU by 2050

last modified Dec 13, 2019 04:31 PM
13 December 2019 – The European Council of member states yesterday formally supported the EU’s goal to become the world's first 'climate neutral' continent by 2050.

This endorsement, despite continuing opposition from Poland, is a major boost to the European Green Deal plan unveiled by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Wednesday, the Council issued a statement following its meeting last night declaring that it "endorses the objective of achieving a climate-neutral EU by 2050, in line with the objectives of the Paris Agreement".

European Corporate Leaders Group (CLG Europe) Senior Advisor Dr Martin Porter said:

“President von der Leyen’s aim to deliver the first zero carbon continent just came a step closer with the European Council’s endorsement of the objective of achieving a climate neutral EU by 2050. However, the agreement has fallen short, with one Member State unable to commit to implementation.

“The EU must now deliver its ambitious Green Deal and it is vital those proposals send a clear signal to business, finance and the rest of the economy that the net zero revolution is really here.

“As understanding of our impact on the natural world deepens, and society in many places faces more profound resource and climate threats, we need effective policies to ensure that a just economic transformation can become a reality. Delivering higher ambition on 2030 in the first half of next year will be essential to remain within the parameters of a 1.5C-increase world, and will also be good for the economy in the long-term.

“The EU this week has offered a glimpse of a new vision of climate leadership and it must follow this with a clear and rapid timetable of delivery that can unlock the investment and innovation required to accelerate climate action over the next five years.”

Earlier this year, in a letter to EU Heads of State, business leaders, including members of CLG Europe, wrote: ‘Collectively, we have an urgent task. To decarbonize the global economy in little more than a generation. Europe led the last industrial revolution. We believe it must lead the next one. This is essential to achieve a prosperous and secure future for Europe.’

Read CLG Europe's reaction to the European Green Deal and find out how CLG members are preparing for a net zero future.