19 July 2023

Scientific advice for the determination of an EU-wide 2040 climate target and a greenhouse gas budget for 2030–2050’ Key Points

European Climate Advisory Board recommends keeping the EU's greenhouse gas emissions budget (i.e. cumulative emissions) for the period 2030 to 2050 within a limit of 11-14 Gt CO2e, in line with limiting global warming to 1.5 °C.

To achieve the identified  target , the EU must strive for net emissions reductions of 90-95% by 2040, relative to 1990 levels. These reductions are essential for mitigating climate risks and achieving a sustainable future.

To identify feasible emission reductions in the EU by 2040, the Advisory Board analysed over 1000 EU emission pathways, identifying those scenarios that align with the objective of limiting global warming to 1.5°C and the EU’s goal to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.

The report assessed also the scenarios and considered their feasibility, including the environmental risks and challenges associated with short-term scale-up of technologies including for solar photovoltaics, wind power, and hydrogen energy.
The assessed scenarios reveal several common features that are important to consider. One notable aspect found in multiple scenarios is the significant deployment of wind and solar energy, combined with electrification of energy use and scale-up of fossil fuel alternatives such as hydrogen.

Pathways combining this technology scale-up with efficiency gains can lead to a near-complete decarbonisation of the EU power sector by 2040, including the phase-out of coal-fired electricity generation by 2030 and unabated gas-fired generation by 2040.

These pathways also minimise the EU’s reliance on removal of CO2 from the atmosphere (by either novel carbon removal technologies or enhancement of the natural land sink) thereby minimising the risks associated with relying on these approaches. However, even these pathways require carbon removal at scale in order to achieve climate neutrality. tions, the 2030-2050 carbon budget and the 2040 climate target.

Learn more and download the report at the following link!

Credits: Fahad Alani