On the Way to Climate Neutrality
In December 2019, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen presented to the public the European Green Deal.
It aims to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, while at the same time also boosting our economy and competitiveness. Changes to climate policy are necessary because the current political framework does not allow the European Union to meet the international commitments it has made. The green transition is a big challenge. The COVID-19 pandemic that hit the world was the first setback on the way to climate neutrality. Fortunately, the European Union quickly realised that overcoming the crisis and the recovery would have to be used for the benefit of longer-term goals. The green transition became the fundamental principle in overcoming the crisis in the EU, because a crisis is the right time to stimulate the economy with additional investments.
In order to implement the objectives set in the Green Deal, the European Commission has presented a number of specific sectoral strategies and legislative proposals over the last year. The “Fit for 55” package which was presented in July this year is a crucial step on our way towards climate neutrality, the 2030 climate target being an interim stage on it. These more than a dozen legislative proposals are one of the most ambitious and influential endeavours in the entire history of the European Union. When striving towards climate neutrality it is important that no region and no one is forgotten or left behind. The green transition must be fair. Europe’s response and support to weaker regions that need help is the Just Transition Fund and the climate action social fund.
The European Union has a clear plan how to become a truly sustainable human- and nature-friendly continent with a thriving economy by 2050. However, Europe’s efforts alone will not be enough to stop climate change. Fortunately, the example of European Union has inspired others as well. We must continue to fight the climate crisis together – we have no other planet in reserve.