EU climate policies working

CO2 emissions from EU power and industry sectors declined 15.5% in 2023 due to record high adoption of renewable energy. That’s a greater drop than produced by the pandemic economic shutdown and represents a 42% decline from 2005. EU’s power sector emissions plummet as renewables surge – POLITICO

In 4Q 2023, more electricity in the EU was produced from wind than from coal.

EU demand for natural gas is also in decline. Declining EU gas demand diminishes need for US liquified natural gas - E3G


And the EU economy is not working so well.

Yet carbon market analysis firm Veyt cautioned that weak economic growth also played a role in depressing electricity demand.

“The power demand drop … might eventually be reversed if the economy rebounds,” said Ingvild Sørhus, manager for European carbon analysis at Veyt…

Industrial emissions fell 7 percent in 2023, which the EU executive attributed to efficiency improvements — as well as a decline in production.

European businesses are struggling with a mixture of high interest rates, elevated energy costs, inflation and dwindling demand. So 2023’s industrial emissions decline, Sørhus noted, “should not fool us into believing” that major polluters will meet their climate targets.

Aviation emissions, meanwhile, rose 10 percent compared to 2022, part of a “continued rebound” from the pandemic, the Commission said.



Look at the graph. EU emissions have steadily declined from 2005 to 2023. Explain that with an economic downturn in 2023.

And it is not just the depressing of electricity demand. It is the substantial rise in renewable electricity production occurring in conjunction with declining demand for coal and natural gas electricity production. Again, how do you explain that with an economic downturn in 2023?

The EU is rapidly approaching its emissions targets for 2030 and is a proof-of-concept demonstration that climate change energy policies are very effective even with very large and diverse economies. The remaining question is how long will it take to see a similar shift occurring in China.

Probably worth adding the last part of the section you quoted:

But that doesn’t invalidate the long-term trends, Sørhus added: "The buildout of renewable capacity and phase-out of coal, on the other hand, are more structural, and likely to persist.