EU promotes costly, unproven technologies on final net-zero industry plan

Today, the EU institutions failed to provide a clear direction for the future of clean industry in the final deal for the Net-Zero Industry Act (NZIA). This EU law was introduced as a tool to support domestic manufacturing of targeted technologies and help the EU meet its 2030 climate targets and strategic autonomy goals, but today’s final agreement instead gambles on expensive and unproven solutions with limited time and public money available to achieve climate goals.  

The negotiators’ decision to turn the NZIA into a tool to support technologies regardless of their cost-effectiveness and immediate deployability is very concerning. Wind and solar supply chains, heat pumps, batteries, grids and renewable hydrogen for targeted sectors are readily available solutions with proven decarbonisation impact. By giving them the same level of public support as expensive and slow technologies, such as nuclear energy and carbon capture, scarce public funds will be stretched further, minimising impact.

Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is wrongly put forward as a solution for all industrial emissions, when it should be focused on carbon emissions that cannot be prevented at source through other more cost-effective means. Such a heavy reliance on CCS does not only divert taxpayers’ money from the available technologies to decarbonise European industry in the timeframe needed, but also risks maintaining our fossil fuels dependency for the next decades.

Finally, this simplistic approach based on shorter permitting procedures and reduced public participation will result in additional pressure on EU communities and the environment and likely result in overburdening national public authorities and exacerbating conflicts at local level.

The provisional political deal between co-legislators is now pending formal adoption by both institutions. 


Riccardo Nigro, Senior Policy Officer for Zero Pollution Industry at the European Environmental Bureau said: 

“Putting costly, unproven technologies at the same level as proven solutions derails the original intentions behind the Net-Zero Industry Act. This misguided approach jeopardises both environmental and strategic autonomy goals and diverts funds from essential clean technologies. A focused commitment to impactful solutions is essential for meeting 2030 climate targets and boosting European clean industry competitiveness.” 


EU promotes costly, unproven technologies on final net-zero industry plan
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