Government adopts resolution on climate neutrality by 2050

Ljubljana – The government has adopted a resolution on Slovenia’s long-term climate strategy until 2050 in what Environment Minister Andrej Vizjak sees as an important symbolic act marking Earth Day. Slovenia’s goal will be zero emissions by 2050 or climate neutrality, the Government Communication Office said after last night’s session.

In line with the strategy, Slovenia is to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 80-90% by 2050 compared to 2005 and boost the implementation of the policies of adjusting to climate change and providing for climate safety of the people.

The strategy sets the goals for each sector by 2040 and 2050, which must be included in documents and plans of the sectors.

In transport and energy, emissions are to decrease by 90-99%, in agriculture by 5-22%, in industry by 80-87%, in waste management by 75-83% and in general consumption by 87-96%.

The document envisages an inclusive transition into a climate neutral society that will take into account the principles of climate justice. This means the costs and benefits of the transition will be distributed fairly, including to the most vulnerable groups.

“The long-term strategy indicates a clear path for Slovenia’s long-term development in climate change and thus increases predictability for companies, investors and consumers in the green transition of the economy.

“This is a parth towards zero net greenhouse gas emissions, increased transition to renewable energy sources, phasiong out fossil fuels and reducing the end use of energy,” the Environment Ministry said.

Minister Vizjak said today Earth Day was an opportunity to discuss ways in which Slovenia is preserving the environment and plans for the future.

“In the heated race for money and economic prosperity we forget about the environment, our planet much too often. I think this year is very important in this respect,” said Vizjak, pointing to this year’s climate conference in Glasgow, where the US is also to take part again.

Noting that Slovenia was indeed a small country, he stressed that everyone mattered and “together we can make an important contribution to improving the situation on our planet”.

For the period until 2030, the strategy is based on existing documents, including the strategy on Slovenia’s development until 2030, the national energy and climate plan, the resolution on the national programme for transport development until 2030, and the national programme on environmental protection in 2020-2030.

In transport, the resolution envisages an efficient public transport system with modern means of transport and a modern railway network that will enable frequent and fast connections between cities.

In cities, the dominant form of mobility will be cycling and walking.

Cargo transport will be largely shifted to the railways and vehicles will be mostly powered by electricity and partly renewable or synthetic low-carbon gases.

Energy needs will be reduced through boosting energy efficiency, circular economy and other sustainable practices.

The strategy will be the basis for a decision on a second reactor of the Krško Nuclear Power Plant (NEK). According to Vizjak, the investment programme will determine the scope of the investment and financial sources, which will allow for a decision to be made on whether such a facility should be built or not and exactly what kind of a facility this would be.

The minister said EUR 21-27 billion in private and public investment would be needed to reach the set goals. He said all available EU sources for this field would be used. He noted that EU funding of this field was expected to increase and that the energy and climate package Fit for 55 was to allow for at least 55% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2030 compared to 1990.

All ministries will now be tasked with implementing the strategy, so a special task force will be set up at the prime minister’s office to coordinate these efforts, Vizjak said.

He expects parliament to pass the resolution before the summer recess.