EEA reports on 2020 energy targets

02 November 2021

Article: 55/4409

On 26 October 2021, the European Environment Agency (EEA) published a report estimating that the EU has achieved its three 2020 climate and energy targets of: 

  • reducing greenhouse gas emission by 20%, when compared to 1990 levels 
  • increasing the share of renewable energy use to 20% 
  • improving energy efficiency by 20%

According to preliminary data, EU greenhouse gas emissions decreased by 10% from 2019 to 2020, a drop the EEA relate to the COVID-19 pandemic. Estimates suggest that in 2020, when counting gross emissions only, EU greenhouse gas emissions were 31% lower than in 1990, constituting an overachievement of the 20% reduction targets.

The EEA highlight that based on the preliminary data, only 21 EU member states reached their national target in 2020. This means that Bulgaria, Cyprus, Finland, Germany, Ireland and Malta would need to use flexibilities, such as buying emission quotas from other EU countries, to comply with their legal objectives.

The EEA analysis is based on final climate and energy data for 2019, and preliminary data for 2020. The analysis is complemented by a new website, which will explore climate and energy data and country profiles, as well as a technical annex on data and targets.

Source: EEA, 26 October 2021