Wed. Sep 27th, 2023
    The Green Deal of the European Union Faces Challenges and Resistance

    The Green Deal of the European Union, a plan aiming for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, has encountered obstacles and resistance from various interest groups. This plan, which was supposed to be Europe’s answer to the Apollo moon landing, has been weakened and delayed due to concerns from the industry, farmers, and businesses grappling with high inflation and rising energy costs following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

    The EU’s dependence on Chinese imports of clean technologies also complicates its green transition. A recent anti-subsidy investigation against Chinese electric car manufacturers could trigger retaliations and impact the availability of crucial materials for renewable energy infrastructure.

    Diplomats are concerned about the potential unintended consequences of these actions and question the effectiveness of anti-subsidy investigations in protecting European manufacturers. Fair competition is essential in the global green race, but it remains to be seen if the measures imposed by the EU will achieve this goal.

    Competition from the United States also discourages investment in Europe’s green technology industry. The significant support from the US government in the form of tax credits and subsidies for clean tech companies has been praised by investors, who view it as prioritizing funding over regulation.

    Policy makers and advocates have observed a slowdown in the review or introduction of legislation under the Green Deal. This has raised concerns that the plan has focused too much on goals without providing a clear business case for transitioning to a sustainable economy.

    Agreements on newer proposals have become increasingly difficult to reach ahead of the EU elections, and there is strong resistance to climate legislation in some member states. For example, Poland is challenging Green Deal regulations in court and opposes emission reduction targets.

    To address these challenges and attract European industries, the EU has appointed a new head for the Green Deal, Maroš Šefčovič. However, the magnitude of the EU’s ambitions and the profound changes they will bring to the economic model make resistance and obstacles unsurprising.

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