According to the new Governance Regulation adopted last year, Member States had to prepare their draft National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs) by 31st December
2018, while the final version needs to be prepared by 31st December 2019. In these plans, each Member State has to describe, in an integrated manner, its climate and energy
objectives, targets, policies and measures for the period from 2021 to 2030, ensuring that the EU’s 2030 targets for greenhouse gas emission reductions, renewable energy and
energy savings will be met. In June 2019, the European Commission assessed the draft NECPs. The assessment identified a gap between the national ambition levels and the EU’s 2030 targets for energy efficiency and renewable energy. The gap stems from the insufficient ambition of the national energy contributions for 2030 and the lack of informed policies and measures to scale up renewable energy, boost energy savings and phase out fossil fuel subsidies. Also, in many cases commitments to phase out coal are missing, even though these are crucial to provide proper support for the just transition of the regions and communities affected by the energy transformation.
The assessment also included country specific recommendations, providing guidance to the Member States on which improvements they need to make in their plans. Consequently, the Member States which have until the end of the year to finalise their NECPs need to show how the recommendations of the European Commission have been taken into account. The NECPs should set clear pathways to shift away from fossil fuels and promote the rapid development of sustainable energy at the scale needed for steep emissions cuts as soon as possible. As such, implementing these recommendations is just a starting point. Member States should seize this opportunity and considerably
increase the ambition of their plans in order to allow the EU to stick to its engagement under the Paris Agreement to limit temperature rise to 1.5°C.
In this context, this report provides a progress snapshot of the improvements made so far in the draft NECPs. This includes, to the extent possible, an NGO assessment of how far Member States are with the implementation of the Commission’s recommendations and whether they plan to go beyond those. It is not meant to be a comprehensive analysis; instead it provides a first overview of improvements made and issues that still need to be addressed by the Member States before they submit their final plans in December 2019.
The analysis is based on publicly available information such as governmental announcements or new drafts presented at the national level for consultation purposes, as
well as the NGOs’ expert opinion.
Some highlights from the report concerning BSR Countries:
Since the draft NECPs were submitted, Denmark has made a significant development by committing to increase its economy wide greenhouse gas emission reduction target for
2030 to 70%. It is estimated that this will mean a reduction of emissions between 47-53.6% in the non-ETS sectors, representing a target exceeding its requirement under the Effort Sharing Regulation. This will need to be reflected in the country’s revised NECP.
In the former draft of Latvia’s NECP, the greenhouse gas emissions projections in the non- ETS sectors for 2030 slightly exceeded the 6% greenhouse gas emission reduction target. The new draft includes an update from the most recent emissions data. In accordance with the recommendations from the Commission, additional measures in transport, agriculture and energy sectors have been proposed. The work on the new projections with existing and additional measures is not yet complete and more information will be included only in the final NECP.
German government has adopted in November 2019 a Climate Law under which Germany intends to reach climate neutrality by 2050. The law confirms the current 2030
national overall climate target (-55% greenhouse gas emission reduction) and is accompanied by a package of measures in particularly for the non-ETS sectors. Although a
number of these measures have transformative potential, the overall package is quite weak. According to many stakeholders and scientists, the measures in the package are not
enough to reach even the current national emissions reduction target for 2030. The Federal Government has said that it will conduct an impact assessment analysis specifically for the final NECP to comply with the recommendations of the European Commission. This should include emission reduction projections under the additional measures, but further information is not available yet.
For Estonia, the revised draft NECP includes updated greenhouse gas emission reduction projections with additional measures but it currently is not in a format that clearly presents the emission reductions in the non-ETS sectors as a whole. The new 2019 EEA report on trends and projections also includes updated greenhouse gas emission reduction projections with existing and additional measures for the non-ETS sectors. The EEA indicates that even with additional measures, Estonia’s emissions will be higher than their non-ETS target in 2030. However, the overall emission projections under additional measures in the EEA report seem to be higher than those included in the revised draft NECP.