EU Offshore Wind Strategy Coming in 2020

The European Commission plans to present the European Union’s strategy on offshore wind in 2020, according to the indicative timeline set out in the just-released The European Green Deal.

The European  Green Deal is a roadmap on how to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050. Increasing offshore wind production will be essential, building on regional cooperation between member states, according to the document.

The aim of the roadmap is to turn climate and environmental challenges into opportunities across all policy areas and make the transition just and inclusive for all. The roadmap was presented on Wednesday, 11 December, by the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen.

The Commission has invited the European Parliament and the European Council to endorse the Commission’s ambition for Europe’s future economy and the environment and to help realise it. The Commission will bring forward the measures announced in the European Green Deal roadmap.

”The European Green Deal is our new growth strategy – for a growth that gives back more than it takes away,” von der Leyen said.

”It shows how to transform our way of living and working, of producing and consuming so that we live healthier and make our businesses innovative. We can all be involved in the transition and we can all benefit from the opportunities. We will help our economy to be a global leader by moving first and moving fast. We are determined to succeed for the sake of this planet and life on it – for Europe’s natural heritage, for biodiversity, for our forests and our seas. By showing the rest of the world how to be sustainable and competitive, we can convince other countries to move with us.”

The European Green Deal also outlines investments needed and the financing tools available, and explains how to ensure a just and inclusive transition. The roadmap covers all sectors of the economy, notably transport, energy, agriculture, buildings, and industries such as steel, cement, ICT, textiles, and chemicals.

The Commission plans to present within 100 days the first ‘European Climate Law’. The Commission will also present the Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, the new Industrial Strategy and Circular Economy Action Plan, the Farm to Fork Strategy for sustainable food and proposals for pollution-free Europe. The work will also start on upping Europe’s 2030 emissions targets, setting a realistic path to the 2050 goal.

Achieving the current 2030 climate and energy targets is estimated to require EUR 260 billion of additional annual investment, representing about 1.5% of EU’s 2018 GDP. This investment will need the mobilisation of the public and private sectors. The Commission will present in early 2020 a Sustainable Europe Investment Plan to help meet investment needs. At least 25% of the EU’s long-term budget should be dedicated to climate action, and the European Investment Bank will provide further support. For the private sector to contribute to financing the green transition, the Commission will present a Green Financing Strategy in 2020.

In March 2020, the Commission will launch a ‘Climate Pact’ to give citizens a voice and role in designing new actions, sharing information, launching grassroots activities and showcasing solutions that others can follow.

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