Thursday, 22 June 2017
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smokestackThe European Federation for Transport and Environment, and Carbon Market Watch have placed Portugal in 7th place in the European ranking, recognising its current policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Quercus and Zero, two Portuguese environmental groups, consider this result both "satisfactory" and "insufficient."

As negotiations continue on what the EU member states intend to do to combat climate change and meet the agreed objectives of the Paris Agreement, the European Federation for Transport and Environment and the Carbon Market Watch have highlighted the commitments from each country.

At the top of the list is Sweden, Germany and France, the first having significantly higher targets than the EU expected.

At the bottom of the table lies Poland, Spain and the Czech Republic, which continue old practices that are lamentably below what is needed and fall far short of the Paris Agreement targets.

Portugal is in 7th place in its effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, in the transport, agriculture and waste treatment sectors.

For ZERO, this is a "satisfactory position but insufficient with regard to the ambition needed to comply with the Paris Agreement."

The environmental association says Portugal’s poor performance means that "this ranking still does not reflect the ambitious, long-term, publicly stated goal of wanting to be carbon-neutral by 2050."

Quercus considers that Portugal has some good legislation to combat climate change but need to get on with it, "Only three European countries (Sweden, Germany and France) are on track to meet the Paris agreement goals. That is why we need even more ambition if we are to continue to believe in the EU's climate control leadership."

Each country works under an EU legislative package that is part of the "Shared Effort Decision" covering 60% of European greenhouse gas emissions from transport, buildings, agriculture and waste management.

Each country presented a legislative package with binding national emission reduction targets for the period 2021-2030 in line with commitments in Paris in 2015. The final regulation will be adopted by the end of 2017.

It is expected that Portugal, like other countries, will continue with emissions surpluses, "Unfortunately, most countries want to circumvent the legislation and take advantage of its loopholes so that they can continue as if nothing has changed," laments Quercus.