The European Commission has released a roadmap for its recommendation of a 90% net reduction in EU emissions by 2040. The goal of this is to set the path for climate neutrality by 2050.

The Commission believes that setting a 2040 climate target will help European industry, investors, citizens and governments to make decisions in this decade that will keep the EU on track to meet its climate neutrality objective in 2050. It will send important signals on how to invest and plan effectively for the longer term, minimising the risks of stranded assets. With this forward-planning, it is possible to shape a prosperous, competitive and fair society, to decarbonise EU industry and energy systems, and to ensure that Europe is a prime destination for investment, with stable future-proof jobs.

It will also boost Europe’s resilience against future crises, and notably strengthen the EU’s energy independence from fossil fuel imports, which accounted for over 4% of GDP in 2022 as we faced the consequences of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. The costs and human impacts of climate change are increasingly large, and visible. In the last five years alone, climate-related economic damage in Europe is estimated at €170 billion euros. The Commission’s impact assessment finds that, even by conservative estimates, higher global warming as a result of inaction could lower the EU’s GDP by about 7% by the end of the century.

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