EU sets ambitious emissions target, challenging US

The European Union set a tough carbon emissions target in an effort to put the heat on the U.S. and China in the run-up to the climate talks next year.

The bloc’s 28 nations agreed to a binding target to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40 percent by 2030 from 1990 levels at a summit in Brussels on Friday, Bloomberg reports.

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Meeting the new target will cost roughly $48 billion a year, according to EU estimates.

“That sends a strong signal to the international community and I hope that the signal is being received today in Washington, in Beijing and other big economies so that they will prepare their ambitions accordingly,” EU Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard told Bloomberg News in an interview. “Now investors, businesses, everyone will know that this is where we are headed — these are the targets.”