Sectoral emission targets: "Shared responsibility"

By Christian BlockLex Kleren Switch to German for original article

The government has set out how much emissions in certain sectors are to be reduced by 2030. But what does that mean in concrete terms, and how can hundreds of companies be mobilised? For Fedil Director René Winkin it is clear that the announcement alone is not enough for the industrial sector.

Without adapting the framework conditions, the emission reduction targets in the industrial and construction sector cannot be achieved. René Winkin is sure about that. "We want to draw the government's attention to the fact that the targets of this magnitude are not what we had in the past", says the person in charge of the Federation of Luxembourg Industrialists with its 670 members. The leap is too big compared to the sector's current or technically possible efforts to improve energy efficiency or the use of renewable energy sources.

What is at stake? In mid-July this year, the government adopted a draft Grand-Ducal Regulation. It sets out emission reduction targets for five sectors: Industry and construction, the transport sector, residential and office buildings (tertiary buildings), agriculture and forestry as well as waste and wastewater treatment. Article 5 of the Climate Law adopted on 15 December sets out the sectors in which emissions of climate-damaging gases must continuously reduce by 2030.

For the industrial and construction sector, this means a 50% cut in emissions (52 per cent) in total compared to 2019. The preliminary draft of the Grand-Ducal Regulation provides for a quota of 455 thousand tonnes of CO₂-equivalents (CO₂-e) for 2021, which is to be reduced in the coming years to 431 (2022), 408 (2023), 384 (2024) to 242 thousand tonnes of CO₂-e in 2030. Accordingly, the sector will have to reduce its emissions account by five to six per cent annually in the coming years, and even more later on. Companies covered by the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) in the steel, aluminium, glass or clinker production sectors are exempt from the sectoral targets. The companies covered by this climate protection instrument must purchase certificates for their carbon dioxide emissions or reduce their emissions. Currently, the EU Commission is planning to expand the system in order to achieve the goal of climate neutrality by 2050. EU ETS companies are responsible for around 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in Europe.

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