EU 2030 emissions reduction target needs to be brought into line with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C limit

The European Union Council is meeting 10-11 December to revise its 2030 domestic emission reduction target. The Council has an unprecedented opportunity to cement the EU’s global leadership on climate change by adopting a target that is fully consistent with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C limit. Our new briefing shows the domestic emission reductions needed by 2030 for the EU27 and three of its key member states – France, Germany and Poland – to be in line with that limit.

Date Published
2020, December 09

Authors
Ryan Wilson, Matthew Gidden, Bill Hare, Pam Pearson

KEY MESSAGES

  • The European Union Council is meeting 10-11 December to revise its 2030 domestic emissions reduction target to bring it into line with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C goal
  • This briefing shows the domestic emission reductions needed by 2030 for the EU27 and three member states – France, Germany and Poland – based on downscaling of 1.5°C compatible Global mitigation pathways published by the IPCC in the SR1.5.
  • Paris Agreement compatible 2030 domestic emission reductions for the EU27 are in the range of 58-70% below 1990 levels
    - The EU Commission’s proposed 2030 emissions target of a 55% reduction below 1990 levels is not quite compatible with limiting warming to the 1.5°C long-term temperature goal of the Paris Agreement;
    - The EU Parliament’s proposed 60% target lies just within the Paris Agreement compatible band of 2030 emission reductions
    - A 65% target would ensure it is firmly within its 1.5°C compatible 2030 emissions range;
  • If the EU Council adopts a 2030 domestic reduction target well within the Paris Agreement range of 58-70% the EU-27 would join the UK in having fully Paris Agreement compatible domestic emission goals through to mid-century, 2050
  • In addition to a stronger 2030 domestic reduction target the European Union will need to provide further support to less wealthy nations for emissions reductions abroad to ensure the EU is contributing its fair-share of the global mitigation burden;
  • 2030 targets of major EU countries Germany, France, and Poland all fall short of being 1.5°C compatible.
EU27 current and proposed targets vs. temperature ranges