EU chief urges Europe to cut emissions by 55% by 2030

Publish: 5:54 PM, September 16, 2020 | Update: 5:54:PM, September 16, 2020

BRUSSELS, – The European Commission will propose cutting emissions in Europe by 55 percent by 2030 in response to the climate emergency, EU chief Ursula von der Leyen said on Wednesday.

“I recognise that this increase from 40 to 55 (percent) is too much for some, and not enough for others,” Commission president Von der Leyen said, in her annual State of Union speech.

“For us, the 2030 target is ambitious, achievable, and beneficial for Europe” she added.

The more ambitious target is backed by EU powers France and Germany as well as big business, but will still face reluctance by eastern member states that depend on coal for their energy needs.

EU leaders will attempt to agree on the target at summit in October, which would then need the approval of European Parliament, where a majority of MEPs want a more ambitious target.

The target was a landmark proposal of von der Leyen’s address to MEPs which came months after EU leaders agreed to her historic recovery plan to reboot Europe after the pandemic.

Von der Leyen said that 30 percent of spending from the 750-billion-euro ($890-billion) plan would be devoted to climate-friendly projects and financed through so-called green bonds.