Business needs to know about the European Green Deal

On the 29th January a breakfast seminar was arranged on the topic on the European Green Deal, the EU's new growth strategy.

The following questions were discussed by the presenters and the panel:

  • What does the European Green Deal mean for climate change and as a net-zero emission engine?
  • In what way will the European Green Deal be able to stimulate investment in sustainable solutions and technologies?
  • How is geopolitics affected – how will China and the US act?
  • Does the EGD stimulate new business models - what is missing to further increase the ambition?
  • How can we use the EGD in Sweden to give the ongoing transformation in energy and circular economy a boost?

Annika Korzinek, Deputy Head of the European Commission Representation in Sweden, was highlighting why the Green Deal is important and pointed out the benefits of competitive advantage, resource limitation and people demand. Becoming climate neutral gives the EU a first mover advantage and is a necessary response as citizens expects the EU to address the climate and ecosystem degradation.

Mia Pantzar, Senior Analyst at IEEP, Institute for European Environmental Policy, highlighted concerns with the Green Deal that the “elephant” in the room is not mentioned that is consumption. Mia also points out promising aspects of the Green Deal to be:

  • Significant change compared to predecessor
  • Timing is crucial
  • Level of urgency
  • Response to climate change and biodiversity loss/ ecosystem degradation
  • Closest yet to a systemic EU approach on these issues

Ronan Palmer, Head of Clean Economy Program at the think tank E3G, was giving three recommendations for business to know about with the Green Deal:

  1. Get to know about it! Business needs to know about the Green Deal, not just the big picture but they need to start to understand how it affects them, directly or indirectly.
  2. Get active! Do you know how your supply chain is going to be affected by the net zero? Do you know what your environmental performance is? Are you taking advantages of the possibilities? And are you aware of how this is going to affect your customers and your suppliers?
  3. Talk to the government (national, regional, local)! Make sure that your local community and government is supporting your action. Are they putting the right money in research and development, are they giving you the right tax breaks or the right incentives to align with the green deal? If not, make sure they do.

Alarik Sandrup, Director Public and Regulatory Affairs, Lantmännen and President of ePURE the European Renewable Ethanol Association, the European, pointed out that leadership is essential if this is going to work. But, there are challenges that has to be addressed in regards to forest strategy, biodiversity, sustainable finance strategy and farm to fork.

Björn-Ola Linnér, Professor of Environmental Change, Linköping University, said the EU Green Deal is an exercise in disciplining this transformational age, transforming our society into one that no longer needs carbon is of a tectonic nature, quotes Timmermans.

Åsa Persson, Research Director and Deputy Director at Stockholm Environment Institute, emphasized that we need to reduce climate impact with 7 percent per year and we need bold decisions. EU Green Deal is an opportunity for business.

Participants:
Annika Korzinek, Deputy Head of the European Commission Representation in Sweden
Mia Pantzar, Senior Analyst at IEEP, Institute for European Environmental Policy
Ronan Palmer, Head of Clean Economy Program at the think tank E3G
Alarik Sandrup, Director Public and Regulatory Affairs, Lantmännen and President of ePURE, the European Renewable Ethanol Association
Björn-Ola Linnér, Professor of Environmental Change, Linköping University
Åsa Persson, Research Director and Deputy Director at Stockholm Environment Institute

Moderators:
Nina Ekelund, Haga Initiative
Robert Watt, Stockholm Environment Institute

See the seminar here

2020-02/shutterstock-179573879.jpg