The EU and the US seal a joint reduction in emissions with five countries
The European Union, the USA, Japan, Canada, Norway, Singapore and the United Kingdom signed this Friday a Joint Declaration of Energy Importers and Exporters on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels. The signatories of the pact, signed on the sidelines of the COP27 Climate Summit in Egypt, commit to taking “immediate measures” to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production and consumption of fossil energy.
“Every fraction of a degree counts in our fight to preserve our planet for future generations. By working together to tackle methane, we can reduce warming by 0.1 degrees Celsius by mid-century,” said the President of the European Commission (EC), Ursula von der Leyen, in a statement distributed in Brussels. The signatories commit to work towards the creation of an international fossil energy market that minimizes methane and CO2 emissions throughout the value chain to the greatest extent possible, while working to progressively reduce the consumption of fossil fuels.
Reducing emissions of methane and other greenhouse gases from the fossil energy sector also improves energy security by reducing burning, venting and avoidable leaks that waste natural gas, highlighted the vice-president of the Community Executive responsible for the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermanns. And it is that, according to the Dutch politician, “the energy sector offers great potential to obtain rapid results through the detection and rapid repair of leaks and the limitation of venting and flaring”.
The EC added that these measures will also improve the health of citizens by removing black carbon and other associated air pollutants. This pact is a follow-up to the launch of the Global Commitment on Methane in the past COP26which was held in the United Kingdom, to reduce collective anthropogenic methane emissions by at least 30% compared to 2020 levels by 2030. “The EU and the United States launched the Global Commitment on Methane at COP26 in the year past and more than 100 partners have joined us. Now we have to go ahead and get these reductions, and we need more major emitters to join us,” Timmermans urged.
The Global Commitment on Methane is an essential strategy to reduce warming in the short term and keep the 1.5°C temperature rise limit within reach. The European Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson, recalled that the EU has already proposed legislation to reduce harmful methane emissions in the energy sector and said that she hopes to work with international partners to “intensify efforts”. “Reducing emissions of methane and other greenhouse gases from the fossil energy sector will help us strengthen our energy security,” Ella Simson said.
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