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Europe can hit climate neutrality goal at net-zero cost

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Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay

Author: Frédéric Simon


Although cutting emissions to net-zero by 2050 will destroy jobs and push up the costs of doing business in some sectors, it will bring gains elsewhere that will make up for the difference, according to a new study by McKinsey & company.


“Net-zero emissions by 2050 should be achievable at a net-zero cost without compromising overall economic growth or prosperity,” says the study by the global consulting firm, published on Thursday (3 December). 


Although reaching climate neutrality will destroy six million jobs across Europe by 2050, it will also create an additional 11 million jobs in new sectors, the report says.


“The cost increase and the cost savings almost perfectly balance out,” said Hauke Engel, partner at McKinsey. “The cost of living will not increase. In fact, it will slightly decrease for lower-income households,” Engel told a EURACTIV event on Thursday (3 December).


And those estimates are deliberately conservative, Engel added, because they don’t take into account avoided costs of climate change, such as health impacts and physical risks to property.


The European Union agreed one year ago to aim for climate neutrality by 2050, a target which is now being put down into hard legislation in order to make it a legally binding commitment on the EU and its 27 member states.


To put the EU on track for climate neutrality, the European Commission proposed tougher climate goals for 2030 and set off an extensive review of all EU policies ranging from energy to transport and agriculture – an ambitious agenda known as the European Green Deal.


Read the full article here.