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Turning the EU Budget into an
Instrument to Fight against
Climate Change
Presented by Camilla Adelle
Budapest 30 May 2008
The EU’s Response to Climate Change
• Climate change is one of the new challenges facing the EU.
• In 2007 EU leaders agreed an ambitious set of targets to be
reached by 2020:
– To reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20%;
– To increase the share of renewable energy supply to 20%;
– To increase the share of biofuels consumed in transport to 10%.
• To reach these targets the Commission proposed a ‘Climate
and Energy Package’ of measures in January 2008.
• This will entail a considerable level of investment: private/
public; EU/ Member States.
The EU Budget and Climate Change
The EU Budget is complex: Environmental
funding is ‘mainstreamed’ into the EU budget.
Structural and Cohesion Funds: a small
proportion of these funds in the 2000-2006 FP
were spent on climate friendly investments,
such as renewable energy and high-speed rail
networks. BUT cohesion countries have
greatly increased their carbon emissions.
Research and Development: funding for
research on energy (including climate
change) = 2.35 billion euros; and environment
and climate change = 1.8 billion euros.
CAP: intensive agriculture is responsible for
9% of total GHG emissions in the EU but the
current FP cut back spending on rural
development measures.
Why Use the Budget for Fighting Climate
• We used three principles to review the role of the budget in funding
climate change mitigation:
– Added value
– Best policy instrument
– Sound financial management.
– Climate change is a classic example of a cross-border problem
best tackled at an EU level.
– Redistribution of resources to pay for the costs of climate change
– EU expenditure is only one of the policy instruments available to
tackle climate change.
A Future EU Budget?
• A shift of investment in the Structural and Cohesion Funds (low
carbon infrastructure; investments in energy efficient technologies).
• Increased investment in research and development to lever
additional public and private funding.
• Reform of the CAP towards the provision of public goods, such as
enhanced ecosystems services.
• Raising additional funds to tackle climate change? (a climate
change fund; revenue from auctioning ETS permits)
• Climate change is a classic cross-border policy problem which is
best tackled at an EU level rather than by individual Member States.
• Only a minor share of the EU budget is dedicated to funding the
EU’s climate change objectives.
• Much of the EU budget actually locks in high carbon use well into
the future.
• If the EU is to meet its ambitious climate change targets then it
needs to consider the coherence and potential contribution of ALL of
its policies and instruments, including the budget, to achieving
Thank you
IEEP is an independent not for profit institute dedicated to
advancing an environmentally sustainable Europe through
policy analysis, development and dissemination.