European Commission releases climate plan

New Growth Strategy Ursula von der Leyen: "The European Green Deal is our new growth strategy..." Image: European Commission

The European Commission has unveiled its plans to achieve climate neutrality in the EU by 2050, following the European Parliament's recent declaration of a climate emergency.

The ‘European Green Deal’ is designed to be a roadmap for making the EU's economy sustainable by turning climate and environmental challenges into opportunities across all policy areas and making the transition just and inclusive for all. In addition to the 2050 target, the Deal also aims to reduce emissions by at least 50% by 2030.

Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, said:  "The European Green Deal is our new growth strategy – for a growth that gives back more than it takes away." 

As part of the Deal, to reduce transport pollution, the Commission will "take action in relation to maritime transport, including to regulate access of the most polluting ships to EU ports and to oblige docked ships to use shore-side electricity".

Support for Deal

FEPORT (Federation of European Private Port Companies and Terminals) said its members “welcome the Green Deal’s proposed initiatives on digital and smart logistics and all actions aiming at boosting multimodality and shaping environmental and climate standards that apply across value chains”.

Members believe that the Green Deal can be an opportunity for Europe, particularly if, as mentioned in the Communication, sustainability is mainstreamed in all EU policies including competition, stated FEPORT.

In this respect, the organisation welcomes the evaluation of the relevant State aid guidelines, including the environmental and energy State aid guidelines. Consistency between the objectives of the Green Deal and future competition instruments regarding state aid, cartels and mergers will also be crucial to support EU industries’ competitiveness and ensure a level playing field, said FEPORT.

The European Federation of Inland Ports (EFIP) also welcomed the deal. It said renewed support for the modal shift to cleaner forms of transport will prove vital to reaching emission reduction targets.

The organisation said it backs a more ambitious proposal on the Combined Transport Directive, a review of the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive and a review of the Energy Taxation Directive.

EFIP’s president, Friedrich Lehr, commented: “The European Green Deal gives inland ports, and European logistics on the whole, a clear direction for the decarbonisation of European transport. European support for multimodal transport, new technologies and innovative city logistics will put inland ports on the right course to meet the goals for 2030 and 2050.”

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