ENTRACTE in the European Union’s Research and Innovation Magazine HORIZON

November 09, 2015

HORIZON, the European Union’s Research and Innovation Magazine featuring the latest news and features about thought-provoking EU-funded science and innovative research projects, has published the article “How can Europe achieve green growth?” featuring the work and outcomes of the ENTRACTE research project on the 9th of November.

The article discusses the importance of shifting to a decarbonized European economy and how such a step towards a low-carbon economy requires a fundamental shift in thinking. It argues that the cost reducing emissions does not necessarily come at the expense of economic success. When all costs of degradation of land, emissions etc. are added to the equation, the trade-off between ecological ambition and economic output is almost none existent. One of the EU’s flagship climate policies to tackle these issues is the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) which introduced a cap on the total level of emissions. Launched in 2005, it is still the biggest international system for capping emissions in the world.

The ENTRACTE project, which officially ended on the 30th of September 2015, focused its research on assessing the EU’s climate policy portfolio. The consortium showed that economic growth has not stagnated for companies within the ETS but their emissions have shrunk significantly compared to other companies and found that innovation – especially the number of low-carbon patents – of firms within the scheme even increased, while there was no significant effect on the competitiveness levels. Furthermore, the ENTRACTE researchers identified policy instruments that are complementary to the ETS such as energy efficiency standards, renewable policies, carbon taxes, innovation policies, and trade measures and their interactions, making the whole concept more practically applicable. The outcomes can serve as a basis for designing an environmentally effective, economically efficient and politically and legally feasible climate policy mix needed to achieve medium-term and long-term greenhouse gas reduction targets in Europe.

Read the article published by the HORIZON Magazine here.