European Union Council approves greenhouse emissions law
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European Union Council approves greenhouse emissions law

The European Union Council adopted European climate law to make the bloc’s greenhouse gas emissions targets legally binding on Monday, giving the law the final seal of approval. This action ends the adoption procedure and sets into legislation the objective of a climate-neutral EU by 2050.

The approval follows a political agreement reached with the European Parliament on 21 April and the Parliament’s adoption of its position at the first reading on 24 June. The April agreement sets targets to reduce net EU emissions by 55% by 2030 and eliminate them by 2050.

The European Climate Law sets a binding Union climate target of a reduction of net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990. It also establishes a European Scientific Advisory Board on Climate Change who will provide independent scientific advice and produce reports on EU measures, climate targets, and whether there is adherence with the EU’s international commitments under the Paris Agreement.

Minister of Environment and Climate Action, Joao Pedro Matos Fernandes, stated:

I warmly welcome this final step of the adoption of the EU’s very first climate law which enshrines into legislation the 2050 climate neutrality objective. An agreement on the European climate law has been a priority for the Portuguese Presidency and I am glad that we have successfully brought it over the finishing line.

Ministers from the 27 EU countries formally approved the deal, except for Bulgaria which abstained due to the final compromise lacking a reflection of the country’s national position. The law will be signed and published in the Official Journal, before entering into force.