1 billion as innovation boost to promote the green transition: European Green Deal Call

Many trends have accelerated again due to COVID-19. The spotlight on the Green Deal was intensified as well. The European Green Deal Call now financed by "Horizon 2020" with a volume of 1 billion euros is intended to promote Europe's recovery from the coronavirus crisis by transforming green challenges into innovation opportunities. Innovative projects are intended to support the EU in recovering quickly from the crisis and also contribute to social robustness and also to green and digital reconstruction. Sounds great - the ambitious approach corresponds to the scope of the task!

The European Green Deal is the European Commission's blueprint and roadmap to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, with a sustainable economy that leaves no one behind.

Budget around 1 billion Euros
To promote innovative, sustainable projects, the European Commission recently published, on September 18, 2020, the new call for proposals as part of "Horizon 2020" on the topics of the European Green Deal. Research and innovation projects that respond to the climate crisis and contribute to the protection of Europe's unique ecosystems and biodiversity can be submitted until January 26th, 2021. 

Citizen participation to get everyone on board
Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, said: “The € 1 billion tender for the European Green Deal is the last and largest under Horizon 2020. With innovation at its heart, this investment will accelerate a fair and sustainable transition to a climate-neutral Europe by 2050. Since we do not want anyone to be left behind in this systemic transformation, we are calling for specific measures to come into contact with citizens in new ways and to improve social relevance and impact."

Published climate target plan 2030
Since the progress made so far in financing a more sustainable economy is not taking hold quickly enough, the EU Commission is of the opinion that a more impressive strategy for sustainable finance is required. To this end, a renewed strategy was announced in the Green Deal. The EU wants to be climate neutral by 2050 and, in order to achieve this goal, the Commission proposes with the 2030 climate target, which was also recently published, to increase ambitions again and to lower greenhouse gas emissions to at least 55 % below the 1990 level by 2030. This is a significant increase over the previous goal of 40 %. The new proposal is in line with the commitment made in the Green Deal. It is also in line with the Paris Agreement goal of keeping global temperature rises well below 2° C.

Stakeholder input and next steps
And here too there was broad participation. In March 2020, the Commission launched a public consultation inviting all stakeholders and citizens to share their views on increasing the EU's climate ambitions, as well as actions and policymaking. The more than 4,000 contributions influenced the development of the climate target plan.

The European Commission will now prepare detailed legislative proposals on how this goal can be achieved. The climate law regulation proposed by the Commission in March 2020 aims to enshrine the climate neutrality target for 2050 agreed by the EU heads in December 2019 in EU law and to determine the direction of travel for all EU policy.

Original contribution in german: Geld-Magazin_Oktober/2020 
Guest commentary Dr. Susanne Lederer-Pabst in german: Börse Social_Ausgabe_09/2020