Country:European Union
Policy status:In Force
Date Effective:2009
Policy Type:Regulatory Instruments>Monitoring, Regulatory Instruments>Other mandatory requirements
Policy Target:Framework/ Multi-sectoral Policy
Agency:European Commission Directorate-General for Environment
Description:On 6 April 2009 the EU Council of Ministers adopted the final texts of the energy and climate change package negotiated in December 2008. The package aims to meet the EUs goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emission levels 20% from 1990 levels by 2020. It comprises six legislative texts, covering: a revision of the EU emissions trading scheme (ETS); emissions reduction targets for sectors outside the ETS; a framework for carbon capture and storage (CCS); fuel quality standards; CO2 emission limits for new passenger cars; and the promotion of renewable energy sources. The "effort-sharing" directive on efforts by member states to achieve a 20% reduction in the EUs GHG emissions by 2020 sets binding emissions targets on states for sectors not covered under the EU ETS, including transport, agriculture and housing, compared to 2005 levels. The overall aim is for a 10% reduction in emissions from these sectors by 2020. Member states with a relatively low GDP per capita will be allowed to increase their emissions above 2005 to 2020, though in a limited manner, while those with a relatively high GDP per capita will be required to reduce their emissions (from 2005 levels). No member state will be required to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions more than 20% nor allowed to increase its greenhouse gas emissions to more than 20%. Reductions in greenhouse gas emissions should take place between 2013 and 2020, with each member state allowed to carry forward from the following year up to 5% of its annual emission allocation. Where the emissions are below that annual emission allocation, a country can carry over its excess emission reductions to the subsequent years. Countries can also use a limited amount (3%) of carbon credits from developing countries, through the Clean Development Mechanism. Targets for individual member states are set out in Annex II of the Directive. The twelve countries with positive targets are Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia and Slovakia. Slovenia is allowed the highest increase (19%) and Portugal the smallest (1%). Denmark and Ireland have the highest reduction targets, at -20%. Greece and Cyprus have the lowest, at -4% and -5% respectively. The decision also includes provision for its adaptation after the conclusion of an international agreement to fight climate change and for a subsequent move beyond the EUs overall 20 % reduction target. The decision will come into force 20 days after its publication in the Official Journal of the EU.

Last modified: Tue, 10 Jul 2012 16:50:26 CEST