The European Commission has adopted a set of proposals aimed at reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.
One of these proposals, the Regulation on Land Use, Forestry and Agriculture, has an overall European Union target for carbon removals by natural sinks of 310 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions by 2030.
National targets will necessitate member states caring for and expanding their carbon sinks in order to fulfill this target. By 2035, the EU should strive toward climate neutrality in the land use, forestry and agriculture sectors, including agricultural noncarbon emissions from fertilizer use and livestock.
The EU Forest Strategy, which is part of that regulation, intends to increase the quality, quantity and resilience of EU forests. According to the commission, it supports foresters and the forest-based bioeconomy while ensuring sustainable harvesting and biomass use, protecting biodiversity, and planning 3 billion trees across Europe by 2030.
Another of the proposals amends the Renewable Energy Directive, setting an aim to produce 40% of EU energy from renewable sources by 2030. All member states will contribute to that goal, and specific targets are proposed for renewable energy used in transport, heating and cooling, buildings and industry.
The proposal establishes stricter sustainability requirements for bioenergy use and specifies that member states must design any bioenergy support schemes in a way that respects the cascading principle of applications for woody biomass.
A third proposal is focused on aviation and marine fuels. It includes the ReFuelEU Aviation Initiative, which would require fuel suppliers to blend increasing volumes of sustainable aviation fuel in jets used at EU airports, including synthetic low carbon fuels.
Similarly, the FuelEU Maritime Initiative will boost the use of sustainable maritime fuels and zero-emission technologies by establishing a maximum restriction on the greenhouse gas content of energy used by ships visiting European ports.