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11 Jun 2021, 14:09
Kerstine Appunn

Natural carbon sinks should be seperate sector with binding targets – env. NGOs

Clean Energy Wire

The European land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF) sector should make a greater contribution to greenhouse gas reductions by governments setting binding, ambitious targets, a group of German environmental NGOs have said. BUND, E3G, Greenpeace, Succow Foundation, WWF and the umbrella organisation Deutscher Naturschutzring (DNR) argue that LULUCF should be treated as a dedicated sector with a net sink target that remains separate from the emission reduction targets of other sectors. According to the new EU climate protection law, the LULUCF sector must reduce emissions by 225 million tonnes CO2 equivalent, corresponding to 2.2 per cent of today's climate-relevant emissions in the EU, by 2030. The NGOs say that an even higher sink performance with a take-up of up to 600 Mt CO2Eq would be possible with a comprehensive ecological transformation. To this end, emissions from the agriculture sector should be handled separately and data collection on LULUCF should be standardised across Europe. Every member state should have binding national LULUCF goals.

Since May 2021, a net sink target is part of Germany’s national climate action law draft for the first time. On average, the sector will provide a sink for 25 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent by 2030 and 40 million tonnes by 2045. However, researchers have warned that after having been severely damaged by heat waves and droughts in recent years, German forests may not be in the right condition to contribute much to CO2 uptake. 

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