Catchment News

Climate Lecture: The European Green Deal – Towards a climate-neutral EU by 2050

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On February 6 2020 Dr Artur Runge-Metzger of the EU Commission gave a talk in The Mansion House Dublin on ‘The European Green Deal – Towards a climate-neutral EU by 2050’.

European Green Deal

The Commission communication on the European Green Deal was the first policy paper that Ursula von der Leyen’s Commission adopted in mid-December 2019, within her first two weeks of being in office. One of the main objectives of the European Green Deal is to make Europe the first climate neutral continent by 2050. No doubt, this will require a major transformation and modernisation of the European economy and society within the next three decades that leaves nobody behind.

The European Green Deal outlines the first set of around fifty major regulatory and supporting initiatives to be kicked off within the coming two years. They will cover a broad array of EU policies in the fields of climate, energy, industry, mobility, agriculture/forestry, environment, sustainable finance, investments, taxation as well as external relations including trade.

About the speaker

Dr Runge-Metzger is a Director at the DG Climate Action in the European Union, a position he has held since January 2016, covering the development of domestic and international climate strategies; overseeing the governance of EU climate action; regulating greenhouse gas emission from non-ETS sectors including buildings, road transport which includes decarbonising fuels, land use, land use change, forestry, waste, carbon capture, use and storage.

Additionally, he supports innovation and modernisation in the EU’s energy and industrial sectors, including the setting up of the Innovation and Modernisation Fund.

For twelve years prior he led on climate strategy and international climate negotiations including the adoption of the Paris Agreement in 2015. Until mid-2003, Dr Runge-Metzer held various Commission assignments in Sarajevo, Brussels and Harare. He holds a doctoral degree in agricultural economics from the University of Gottingen.

About the EPA Climate Lecture Series

The Environmental Protection Agency, Ireland (EPA) hosted this lecture as part of the National Dialogue on Climate Action.

The EPA’s Climate Change lecture series has been running since late 2007, bringing a range of Irish and international speakers to the Round Room in The Mansion House, Dublin to update Irish audiences on the science of climate change, and possible responses to it.

You can watch all 27 climate lectures below:

Who is involved?

Quite simply, everyone in Ireland has a role to play. This can be from something as simple as making sure you don’t pollute your local stream, or a local community working together to establish a Rivers Trust to enhance the rivers and lakes in their area, to a Government Department or Agency helping a Minister implement a new policy to help protect and enhance all our water bodies.

This website has been developed and is maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is a collaboration between the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Local Authority Waters Programme.


Local Authority Waters Programme

The Local Authority Waters Programme coordinates the efforts of local authorities and other public bodies in the implementation of the River Basin Management Plan, and supports local community and stakeholder involvement in managing our natural waters, for everyone’s benefit.


Environmental Protection Agency

The EPA is responsible for coordinating the monitoring, assessment and reporting on the status of our 4,842 water bodies, looking at trends and changes, determining which waterbodies are at risk and what could be causing this, and drafting environmental objectives for each.


Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

The Department is responsible for making sure that the right policies, regulations and resources are in place to implement the Water Framework Directive, and developing a River Basin Management Plan and Programme of Measures to protect and restore our waters.