Global Warming Potentials
Previous assessments of the Climate Action Tracker used the global warming potentials (GWPs) from the IPCC’s Second Assessment Report (SAR). For this assessment we have updated all figures and time series to GWPs from the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4). We have converted these values to GWP from the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) using the gas by gas information reported in the national communications.
Targets for 2020 and 2030 were calculated from the most recent national inventory submissions (CRF, 2017), which do not include emissions from aviation and shipping.
The calculations of the 2030 target reflect the agreement between the European Parliament and the Council concerning the inclusion of emissions and removals from the LULUCF from December 2017, which allows the utilisation of credits from removals from that sector of up to 280 MtCO2 in the period 2021–2030 to meet the emissions reduction target in the non-ETS sector (European Parliament 2018a). Since the removals have not been included in 1990 emissions levels, this means potential for weakening of the 2030 emissions reduction target. For the calculations made here we assume that the member states will take advantage of this mechanisms throughout the whole of the 2021-2030 period. That would potentially weaken EU 2030 emissions reduction target by 28 MtCO2 annually or 0.8% of the 2030 emissions.
Current policy projections
The current policy projections are based on the EU reference scenario 2016 (European Commission 2016b) and the latest projections provided by the EEA (European Environment Agency 2017b). The two scenarios were chosen because they represent a ‘bottom-up’ and a ‘top-down’ manner of evaluating the impact of policies in the EU. While the EEA data reflect the implementation of existing measures as put forward by member states, the PRIMES model performs a separate modelling exercise to estimate the effects of policies.
For the upper end of current policy projection for 2020 and 2030 we used the EEA data “with existing measures” scenario which reflects the effects of all adopted and implemented measures at the time the projections were prepared. The figures were then harmonised to the latest inventory historical data (CRF, 2016). This harmonisation was necessary due to the differences between the CRF historic data and the data provided by the EEA.
For the lower end of the current policy projections for 2020 and 2030 we used the EU reference scenario 2016, which includes policies and measures adopted at EU level and in the member states by December 2014 and three additional amendments to three Directives agreed in the beginning of 2015 (ILUC amendment to the RES and FQD Directives and the Market Stability Reserve Decision amending the ETS Directive). The figures were also harmonized to the latest inventory historical data (CRF, 2016).
For both sources emissions from international aviation were deducted. For this purpose, the projected emissions from international aviation provided by the EEA had to be deducted from the overall emissions projected by the EEA. For the PRIMES scenario, emissions from international aviation were not provided separately. Therefore, the projected growth in energy consumption in aviation was used to extrapolate aviation emissions from the last available year onwards. Subsequently, the projected emissions from aviation were deducted from the overall emissions provided by the PRIMES scenario.