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Commission warns that EU CO2 stabilization target is at risk

The European Commission has recently adopted its second report on the evaluation of national programmes under the monitoring mechanism of Community CO2 and other Greenhouse gas emissions. The report, entitled "Progress towards the Community CO2 stabilization target", concludes...
The European Commission has recently adopted its second report on the evaluation of national programmes under the monitoring mechanism of Community CO2 and other Greenhouse gas emissions. The report, entitled "Progress towards the Community CO2 stabilization target", concludes that it is highly uncertain whether the measures adopted in the national programmes are sufficient to meet the Community's stabilization target for CO2 emissions by the year 2000.

Commenting on the report, Mrs. Ritt Bjerregaard, Commissioner responsible for the environment, expressed her deep concern and noted that obvious possibilities for reducing CO2 emissions, such as energy-saving programmes, were not being efficiently used or implemented by Member States.

The Community has made a commitment, under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, to stabilize CO2 emissions in the Community as a whole at 1990 levels by the year 2000. Most, but not all, Member States have set national targets which indicate the contribution they expect to make to meeting the Community target.

The report indicates that the aggregate of Member States' targets is only marginally outside the Community's target for emissions. However, it must be noted that the assumptions made for three countries (Finland, France and Germany), which have neither a numerical target or an objective for the year 2000, are critical for this outcome, in that their CO2 emissions represented 43% of total Community emissions in 1990. In general, therefore, the Commission notes that the assumptions which have been made in arriving at the aggregate do not assure any certainty in the achievement of the overall target.

The Commission evaluation reports on the work carried out under the Monitoring Mechanism, presents an overview of the inventories of CO2 and other green house gas emissions established by the EU Member States, and provides an evaluation of progress towards the CO2 stabilization target. It also includes a review of the content of the national programmes, the trajectories and the effect of measures implemented.
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