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Two Reports on EU Mitigation Action Review Emission Reduction Efforts

12 October 2010: The European Environment Agency (EEA) and the European Commission have published two separate reports on mitigation action in the EU that highlight that the EU is on track towards achieving its emission reduction targets.

According to the Commission's annual report, the EU "is ahead of schedule" in its commitment to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2012 and the 25 member States with reduction targets under the Kyoto Protocol will meet their commitments. Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action, said that the EU is "heading to overachieving." For the EU-15, the Commission's progress report shows that total GHG emissions will average around 14.2% below base year levels in the 2008-2012 commitment period if member States go ahead with plans to buy international emission credits and with planned afforestation and reforestation activities. Existing policies and measures are expected to deliver emission reductions of 10.4% below base year levels. For the EU-27, all 10 of the EU-12 member States that have a Kyoto target are likely to meet or over-achieve their Kyoto commitments of a 6% or 8% reduction against base year levels.

While the Commission report takes into account actual emissions and projections to the end of the 2008-2012 commitment period, the separate report published by the EEA, titled "Tracking progress towards Kyoto and 2020 targets," refers to the member State level and is based on actual emissions in 2008 only. The EEA report provisionally estimates that, in 2009, emissions fell sharply due to the economic situation and the EU-27 is well on track towards achieving its 20% reduction target by 2020. It shows that, in 2009, EU-15 emissions were estimated to be 12.9% below their base year levels while EU-27 emissions were estimated at 17.3% below 1990 levels.
The EEA report further notes that Austria, Denmark and Italy need to step up their current efforts until 2012 to ensure that their contribution to the common EU-15 target is delivered. [EU Press Release] [Commission Report] [EEA Press Release] [EEA Report]