Europe dead set on low-carbon economy

March 11, 2011 at 9:40 AM
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BRUSSELS, March 11 (UPI) -- Efforts to create a low-carbon economy in the European Union by 2050 require energy efficiency steps from all member states, the European Commission said.

The European Commission said it aims to step up efforts on energy cuts while spelling out ways to create a competitive low-carbon economy in the European Union.

A new energy proposal by the European government calls on member states to cut energy consumption at least 3 percent in public buildings each year, increase the use of so-called smart grids and conduct energy audits for larger companies.

The commission said the plans require an additional $373 billion in green energy investments each year. This investment is on top of the 19 percent of the European gross domestic product targeting green technology already planned.

"The low-carbon road map presents cost-effective ways the EU can further cut greenhouse emissions -- to just 5 to 20 percent of 1990 levels by 2050 -- and still become more competitive," the commission said.

The European government said it would propose new laws on its energy road map in the coming months.

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