The climate has reeled

The Law on Climate Protection from Catastrophic Changes provides for the introduction of a cap on CO2 emissions by sector. The goal is to reduce them by 55% by 2030.

A country’s “weapon” to contain or defend against climate change includes climate legislation. The prolonged high temperatures that hit Greece and the wildfires that have ravaged the country for weeks leave no room for further delays in the implementation of the resolutions.

The new bill is expected to be presented for public discussion in early autumn, with a voting schedule at a plenary session of parliament. This will take place before the talks at the UN World Climate Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, which will be held in November this year.

In fact, the main points of the law were preliminary approved, although the question of their implementation is still open. The engagement is likely to take place in early September when the next meeting of the members of the scientific committee on climate change in Greece is scheduled.

In particular, according to the Secretary General for the Environment Konstantinos Arabosis, 2 key points were recently introduced at a special event on national climate law organized by the British Embassy in Athens in cooperation with WWF Hellas.

The first concerns a 55% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Today, compared with the base year (1990), they are down by 22%, which is far from even the previous target set in 2018 – a reduction of 40%.

As for the second step, it concerns the introduction of a sectoral carbon budget for each production sector, that is, the precise determination of emissions separately for, for example, transport, construction sector, industry, etc.

The goal, Mr. Arabosis emphasized, is to understand the perspectives that each sector has in its own right to contribute to the overall goal of protecting against climate change. The budget for the coal industry will be determined, as the Secretary General said, in a five-year plan.

In addition, Mr. Aravosis and the Chair of the Scientific Committee on Climate Change, Professor Kostas Sinolakis, mentioned the need to approve another milestone by 2050.

However, as mentioned, the committee members have not yet decided whether to postpone the goal, for example, by 2040 to reduce emissions that are dangerous to the global climate by 80%. Or to bring it closer – to do it much earlier, for example, by 2024 or 2025.

According to Mr. Arabosis, there is political will to green the economy. “Soon we will have a climate law with all the tools and solutions to achieve the European 2050 climate neutrality targets. We have ambitions, but also economic instruments, ”he said.

As the Secretary General of the Ministry of Environment and Energy pointed out, the relevant committee studies the climate laws of other member states, as well as proposals from environmental organizations such as WWF. According to him, the climate law, together with the National Energy and Climate Plan (ESEK), which is currently being revised, and the circular economy law will become three “tools” for turning the Greek economy towards climate neutrality.

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