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EU 2019 greenhouse gas emissions down 24 percent since 1990

EU 2019 greenhouse gas emissions down 24 percent since 1990
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European Union (EU) nations’ greenhouse gas emissions for 2019 were down 24 percent compared to the group of countries’ 1990 emissions levels, according to a new report. 

The report from the European Commission, the EU’s executive branch, also said emissions had dropped by 3.7 percent compared to 2018 and were at their lowest level since 1990. 

Emissions are expected to drop even further in 2020 due to the economic slowdown linked to the coronavirus pandemic.

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The EU’s drop for 2019 was greater than the U.S.’s, which a preliminary analysis from January showed was about 2.1 percent. 

In a statement announcing the report, the commission’s executive vice president for the European Green Deal, the EU’s climate plan, argued that more needs to be done to help reach the plan’s goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. 

“Today's report again confirms we need to step up our efforts across all sectors of the economy to reach our common goal of climate neutrality by 2050,” said Frans Timmermans. 

“The transition is feasible if we stick to our commitment and seize the opportunities of the recovery to reboot our economy in a greener, more resilient way and create a healthy, sustainable future for all,” Timmermans said. 

The EU is aiming to reach a 40 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions emissions compared to 1990 levels by 2030. In September, it proposed upping that goal to a 55 percent reduction. 

The report said that under existing national policies, the 27 countries are expected to reduce their emissions by 30 percent by 2030, however, it said that new planned measures would have the union reduce its emissions by about 41 percent.