Businesses and consumers will decide whether the EU Green Deal works

(EurActiv, 12 Jan 2021) As the European Commission fleshes out its Green Deal policy unveiled by Ursula von der Leyen one year ago, companies are looking at how they fit into the picture.

In December 2019, shortly after she took office, Ursula von der Leyen unveiled her first flagship policy – the EU Green Deal. It’s an umbrella of policies designed to get the EU to its target of reducing emissions by 55% by 2030 and down to net zero by 2050. Since it is a work in progress, many of those policies were unveiled last year, and there are more to come this year.

But one year into the Green Deal, there is still uncertainty among the business community about how they, and their consumers, fit into the picture. Will the transformation be led top-down by EU regulation, or bottom-up by consumer demand?

“It’s about consumer choices: what we do, what products we buy, how we adjust our lifestyle,” said Slovakian centrist MEP Martin Hojsik at a EURACTIV virtual event last month.

“It’s about what we ask for, from the companies and from the policy-makers. These are very important things because the pressure from the public did change the European Parliament elections and due to the pressure from the public, we have – in my opinion – the green deal. We can say it was because scientists were calling for action, sadly I think no, it was because of public pressure.”

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EurActiv, 12 Jan 2021: Businesses and consumers will decide whether the EU Green Deal works