The Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry sector in the EU as a whole is a net sink, removing about 350 Mt of CO2 every year. However, this sink is projected to decrease. The legislative proposal for post-2020 is unambitious and includes loopholes
LULUCF until 2020
The EU’s current 2020 greenhouse gas reduction target of minus 20% below 2005 emissions levels does not include CO2 emissions nor removals (when CO2 is taken up by plants, trees or soils) from Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF). (Non-CO2 emissions from the land-use sector are included in each Member State’s non-ETS target under the Effort Sharing Regulation). When the 2020 targets were set, LULUCF was kept separate from sectors that produce emissions, on the basis that the LULUCF sector was inherently different from other sectors because of issue such as permanence and difficulties with accounting land emissions. At the same time LULUCF is included in EU countries’ Kyoto protocol targets.
LULUCF after 2020
The European Council decided in October 2014 that LULUCF should be included in the 2030 framework but left it open how that should happen. In July 2016, the European Commission published their proposal for a regulation for the LULUCF sectors in July 2016 (see all documents here). The proposal creates a separate legislative framework for LULUCF but allows Member States to offset some of their emission reductions in the Effort Sharing Regulation sectors (i.e. buildings, road transport) with forestry credits.
This proposal will be discussed by the European Parliament and the Member States. Rapporteur is the German MEP Norbert Lins (EPP), Shadows are S&D: Paul Brannen (UK), ALDE: Nils Torvalds (FI), Greens: Benedek Javor (HU), ECR: Wisniewska (PL), GUE: Flanagan (IE), EFDD: Marco Affronte (IT).
Timetable in the European Parliament's ENVI and ITRE Committee
|ENVI Public Hearing||30/31 January 2017|
|ENVI Consideration of draft report||20/21 March 2017|
|ENVI Deadline for amendments||27 March 2017, 12.00|
|ENVI Consideration of amendments||24/25 April 2017|
|ITRE Vote||11 May 2017|
|ENVI Vote||22 June 2017|
Timetable and Presidencies European Council
In the Environment and/or Agriculture Council the Member States will debate the ESR proposal under the leadership of its consecutive presidencies: 2016: Netherlands, Slovakia, 2017: Malta, Estonia (no UK presidency!), 2018: Bulgaria, Austria.
CAN Europe calls for more ambition and no loopholes
It is essential that the emissions of the LULUCF sector are addressed, but without compromising the emission mitigation commitment made for the ETS or non-ETS sectors.
CAN Europe calls for:
- A more ambitious target for the LULUCF sectors. The proposed 2030 target of no-debit, meaning no emissions from the LULUCF sector are not ambitious enough given that the land-use sector has to absorb as many emissions as possible, without compromising biodiversity or food security.
- Net-net accounting rules that are clear, honest and transparent, allowing real emission reductions, avoiding “hidden emissions“. Learn more about net-net accounting
- Abolishing the proposed loophole which would allow for 280 million tonnes of LULUCF reductions to be counted towards the non-ETS target.
- Mandatory accounting for ‘managed wetland’
- Ensure respect for EU Nature legislation
- No offsetting from the forestry sector
- Full accounting for emissions from bioenergy.
In addition, the EU’s land sector does not have a mid- or a long-term strategy for decarbonisation. The European Commission should urgently develop a 2050 roadmap for agriculture, forestry and other land-use sectors that takes into account the EU’s 2050 objectives as well as the IPCC’s 2°C compliant carbon budgets.
The proposed Regulation is unambitious and must be strengthened in several ways to ensure that the LULUCF sectors sufficiently contribute to achieving the European Union’s international commitments under the Paris Agreement. Read more
The briefing on Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) was developed in spring 2016 to give a brief overview and update on LULUCF and its relevance for EU climate policy after the UNFCCC international climate agreement that was made in Paris in December 2015. Read More
CAN Europe made a submission on the European Commission’s consultation on how to treat land-based emissions in the 2030 target. Read more
CAN Europe made a submission on the European Commission’s consultation a sustainable bioenergy policy for the period after 2020. Read more
The Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR) sets emissions reduction targets for each EU Member States for the sectors not covered under the EU's Emissions Trading Scheme. These non-ETS sectors include nearly 60% of the EU’s emissions and include ground transportation, agriculture, waste and buildings. Read more
Here you find a range of useful external LULUCF resources. Read More