Decarbonisation of the Energy System

EU Climate Policy and Targets

The European Union has set several targets to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions progressively up to 2050 and to achieve the binding goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement. At COP 21, States committed themselves to keep the increase in global average temperature well below 2ºC above pre-industrial levels, with the aim of limiting the increase to 1.5ºC. The targets set by the European Union are included in three main initiatives: the 2020 Package, the 2030 Framework and the 2050 Roadmap.

The 2020 Climate and Energy Package, adopted by EU leaders in 2007, sets three binding targets of 20% cut in GHG emissions, 20% of EU energy from renewables and 20% improvement in energy efficiency. Building on the 2020 Package, EU leaders adopted a new framework in 2014 to help achieve a more competitive, secure and sustainable energy system and meet EU’s long-term greenhouse gas reduction objectives. The new targets for 2030 are at least 40% cuts in GHG emissions, at least 27% EU energy coming from renewables and at least 27% improvement in energy efficiency.

Finally, in order to make the European economy more climate-friendly and less energy-consuming, the European Commission adopted a 2050 roadmap that suggests cutting EU’ greenhouse gas emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050. To reach this target in the most cost-efficient way, it has been estimated that Europe’s should cut 40% of its emissions by 2030 and 60% by 2040.

Heat- pump technologies reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the residential, commercial and industrial sector, as they provide solutions that combine energy efficiency and the use of renewable sources. Therefore, high climate and energy targets indirectly benefit the heat-pump industry, which provides solutions that combine energy efficiency and the use of renewable sources. Heat pumps can therefore help the EU meet its 2020, 2030 and 2050 objectives and fulfil its obligations under the Paris Agreement.