European climate law entered into force on Thursday 29 July. This means that Poland and other EU countries have a legal obligation to radically reduce their greenhouse gas emissions in nine years.
European climate law defines, inter alia, legally binding EU climate neutrality targets by 2050 and emission reduction by 55 percent by 2030. How is this supposed to work in practice?
“Each EU country is obliged to comply with the European climate law: take all measures to implement it and refrain from actions that could hinder the achievement of its goal. The important thing is that the new law obliges each member state to include the EU's climate neutrality goal in national actions, plans, and strategies,” Bolesław Matuszewski, attorney at ClientEarth, said.
The EC will publish the projected EU emission budget for 2030-2050. This budget is an indicative total amount of net greenhouse gas emissions most likely to be emitted over this period without the Union risking a breach of its commitments under the Paris Agreement.
One of the changes that will certainly affect Poland will also be the reform of the emissions trading system.
"This mechanism will push fossil fuels out of the market even faster and replace them with clean energy sources," Izabela Zygmunt, a senior analyst at WiseEuropa, an independent think tank, said.
“After the reform, plans to keep coal in the energy system for a long time or to replace it on a large scale with gas will prove unrealistic. Therefore, some of Poland's plans, which we know, for example, from Poland's Energy Policy until 2040, may simply turn out to be impossible in the new EU context,” she added.
As an example, she indicated the proposal to ban the use of fossil fuels in district heating networks in the future.