BRUSSELS, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 20th july, 2016) - The EU on Wednesday unveiled national targets for cutting greenhouse gases by 2030, placing the burden on richer northern countries including exit-bound Britain to help meet the bloc's UN goal. The plans for the 28 EU member states put the onus on Sweden, Luxembourg, Finland, Denmark, Germany, Britain, France and Austria as the bloc seeks to meet its commitment to cut emissions by 40 percent over 1990 levels.
The countries must now approve the plans by the European Commission, although it is unclear how Britain will react following its shock June 23 referendum vote to leave the EU. The EU set the 2030 target as its overall pledge in the UN's climate agreement, reached in Paris last December. "The national binding targets we are proposing are fair, flexible and realistic," EU Climate Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete said in a statement.
"They set the right incentives to unleash investments in sectors like transport, agriculture, buildings and waste management." Under the targets, which are based on economic growth, powerhouse Germany and tiny Luxembourg must cut emissions by 40 percent over 2005 levels, while Finland and Denmark must cut emissions by 39 percent. Britain and France are asked to cut emissions by 37 percent while Netherlands and Austria should cut by 36 percent, according to the numbers released by the European Commission, the EU executive.