Kassenberg, A.; Krawiec, K.; de Vries, J.; von Santen, W.; Pérez, P.F. (2023): Synthesis report on ex-post assessment of EU climate policies. 4i-TRACTION Deliverable 2.7. WiseEuropa, Warsaw.

Synthesis Report on the Ex-Post Assessment of the EU Climate Policies

This report synthesises an ex-post assessment of the climate policy of the European Union in the period of 2005-2020.

We present key insights into the heterogeneity of EU climate policy in this period and identify the main drivers, trade-offs, and conflicts that affect the establishment and implementation of policy.

In our report, we provide a list of the documents and legal acts included in the analysis and provide a summary of the methodology employed. We also describe the most important assumptions underpinning our quantitative and qualitative assessment of climate policy of the European Union for the period 2005-2020, as well as national case studies (NCS) and other WP2 activities, including four web-based stakeholder workshops.

The main part of this report is the conclusions drawn from the assessment of the establishment and implementation of EU climate policy in the period 2005-2020. We examined the conclusions from the perspectives of headline targets (the so-called '20-20-20 targets') of 20% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 compared to 1990, 20% share of renewable energy in total final energy consumption, 10% renewable energy in transport by 2020, and 20% improvement in energy efficiency by 2020 compared to the reference scenario. As a consequence, this report is broken down into sections on greenhouse gas emissions, renewable energy sources, and energy efficiency. Next, we focus on the four "I" dimensions of climate policy. We argue that innovation and investment are crucial in a transformative climate policy because they tackle larger challenges and opportunities that go beyond achieving the 20-20-20 headline targets. We also synthesise our findings within the scope of infrastructure and integration.

Finally, we present recommendations from our ex-post review of EU climate policy at both EU level and in the Member States we derive eight key recommendations:

  • Develop a comprehensive evaluation programme for EU climate policy
  • Embed the right conditions for a well-functioning monitoring framework in the design of EU climate policy
  • Strengthening climate policy making and implementation by taking a trans-formative approach (innovation, investment, infrastructure, integration)
  • Coherence in terms of content and communication of climate policymaking
  • Climate test as a tool for compliance of solutions with climate policy
  • Without sacrificing ambition of climate policy, embrace the diversity of Member States and their populations
  • EU climate policy cannot disregard the international dimension
  • Take advantage of the experience of the Member States and learn from the mistakes made at the national level.