EU transport ministers discuss ‘problem child’ of green transition

(EurActiv, 3 Apr 2024) As EU transport ministers gather for an informal meeting in Brussels on Wednesday (3 April), the sector remains the “problem child” of the bloc’s climate efforts and could account for 44% of all greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, according to latest projections.

While climate-wrecking emissions from economic sectors such as energy, industry, buildings, and agriculture have fallen since 1990, greenhouse gas emissions from transport have risen by 26%, reaching 1,046 megatonnes of CO2 in 2023.

While they could fall slightly by 2030, according to a report by the NGO Transport & Environment (T&E), this would still leave transport emissions well above the EU’s overall emissions reduction target of -55%, compared to 1990 levels, and would leave other sectors to do the heavy lifting.

If other sectors reduce emissions in line with the EU’s target, the transport sector could soon account for 44% of total emissions, up from 29% today, the report says.

Transport is “the problem child of Europe’s climate efforts”, said William Todts, T&E’s executive director. On Wednesday, he will present some of the report’s key findings to transport ministers from the EU’s 27 countries, who are gathering for an informal meeting in Brussels to discuss the “greening of transport”.

A key reason for the rise in transport emissions is the increase in people’s mobility, with car kilometres up 15% since 2000 and emissions from aviation more than doubling since 1990.

External link

EurActiv, 3 Apr 2024: EU transport ministers discuss ‘problem child’ of green transition