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Increase in EU climate policy support

EUROPE: A majority of citizens support the European Union's policies to tackle climate change, an opinion poll has found.

The European Union's policies on renewable energy and climate change has wide-spread support among citizens, the poll suggests
The European Union's policies on renewable energy and climate change has wide-spread support among citizens, the poll suggests

Almost 90% of respondents to the latest Eurobarometer poll on climate change said governments should set targets to increase renewable energy use by 2030.

A similar share of the 28,000 people surveyed said nations should support energy efficiency improvements.

A large majority of the public think more financial support should be given to the transition to clean energy (79%) and believe reducing fossil fuel imports can increase energy security (64%).

The European Commission said the poll showed the EU's "ambitious" climate and energy targets for 2030 had the backing of its citizens.

"It also shows that a clear majority of Europeans expect their politicians to address the serious climate challenge now as an essential tool for sustainable economic growth and creating jobs," said climate commissioner Miguel Arias Canete.

New study

In a paper published in Nature Geoscience, researchers re-evaluated the total amount of CO2 that can still be emitted while maintaining a good chance of keeping temperature rise below 1.5C.

The new estimates suggest a remaining carbon budget of around 20 years at current emission rates for a two-in-three chance of meeting the target.

"Pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5C is not chasing a geophysical impossibility," the new study stated.

But it warned that meeting the target would likely require "significant strengthening" of the national emissions reduction pledges submitted under the Paris accord at the first opportunity.

Rates of decarbonisation required have only been seen in times of global recession and war, the paper noted.

First published on Ends Europe here and here

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