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Ten issues to watch in 2022

In-Depth Analysis 10-01-2022

This is the sixth edition of an annual EPRS publication aimed at identifying and framing some of the key issues and policy areas that have the potential to feature prominently in public debate and on the political agenda of the European Union over the coming year. The topics analysed encompass achieving zero greenhouse gas emissions while maintaining economic growth, securing supply chains of semiconductors, moving towards sustainable agriculture, ensuring nuclear non proliferation, shaping the economic ...

Carbon farming refers to sequestering and storing carbon and/or reducing greenhouse gas emissions at farm level. It offers significant but uncertain mitigation potential in the EU, can deliver co-benefits to farmers and society, but also carries risks that need to be managed. The report identifies opportunities and constraints for carbon farming, options for financing, and open questions that need to be resolved to scale up carbon farming in a way that delivers robust climate mitigation and European ...

At a time when the European Union (EU) is preparing a major revision of its climate and energy framework in line with the objectives of the European Green Deal and the targets set in the European Climate Law, this briefing looks at overall progress on climate action. Although the EU met its 2020 targets for reducing greenhouse gases (GHG) and increasing renewable energy use and energy efficiency in the extraordinary context of the coronavirus crisis, pandemic recovery led energy consumption and emissions ...

The purpose of this paper is to inform the committees of the European Parliament about the challenges of genome editing in the 21st century, and the societal hopes and concerns surrounding its possible implementation to support European food production. The higher precision of new genetic techniques (NGTs) raises the question of whether they should be treated differently or even exempt from the current GMO Directive. NGTs (mainly CRISPR-cas9) are the subject of controversy, as some believe they will ...

To align regulations and policies with the legally binding goals – delivering, by 2030, a 55 % net greenhouse gas emissions reduction compared to 1990, and reaching climate neutrality in Europe by 2050 – on 14 July the European Commission presented its first proposals under the 'fit for 55' package. One of these proposals involves amending Regulation (EU) 2018/841 on emissions and removals from land use, land-use change and forestry (the LULUCF Regulation). Among the main changes envisaged are to ...

This briefing provides an initial analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the Commission’s impact assessment (IA) accompanying the above-mentioned proposal, submitted on 14 July 2021 and referred to the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE). The proposal for a recast Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) is part of the Commission’s ‘Fit for 55’ package that aims to adapt EU law to the new EU objective of a minimum 55 % reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions ...

O presente estudo fornece uma perspetiva geral independente do panorama da indústria automóvel na UE. Mais especificamente, o estudo avalia as tendências ecológica e digital que estão atualmente a reformular o setor automóvel e fornece recomendações atendendo à adequação e à coerência das medidas atuais e futuras da UE. O presente documento foi elaborado pelo Departamento Temático das Políticas Económicas e Científicas e da Qualidade de Vida, a pedido da Comissão da Indústria, da Investigação e ...

Epidemiological studies of Covid-19 have, in most cases, provided inconclusive results to date regarding the role of air pollution in the transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the geographical spread of the disease, both regionally and globally. The present review analysed just under 6 000 articles published up to 31 May 2021, looking at the role of pollution and air quality factors in the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and in the geographical differences in Covid-19 propagation. A body of evidence ...

Given the vast potential for renewable electricity generation, the production of renewable hydrogen is a promising option for the hard-to-decarbonise energy-intensive industry sectors. A growing hydrogen sector will also result in job creation and economic growth while fostering innovation and reducing pollution. The European Commission published its Hydrogen Strategy in 2020 with the aim of boosting hydrogen use in the EU while promoting the uptake of renewable hydrogen production. Recent activities ...

The European Union has an ambitious climate strategy and is looking for ways to boost technologies that will make it possible. Could hydrogen and the deployment of related technology and infrastructure become a decisive factor in decarbonising specific industry sectors?