Nordic energy CEOs call for an ambitious European Green Deal

07.11.2019 | news

Statkraft CEO Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, Fortum CEO Pekka Lundmark and Vattenfall CEO Magnus Hall

From the left, Statkraft CEO Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, Fortum CEO Pekka Lundmark and Vattenfall CEO Magnus Hall.

In a joint declaration, the CEOs of Fortum, Statkraft and Vattenfall encourage the EU to increase its climate ambition to match the Paris Agreement and enshrine the 2050 climate neutrality target in European Climate Law. Based on this, a cost-efficient emissions reduction pathway with coherent intermediary climate targets for 2030 and 2040 needs to be established.

The three Nordic utilities believe that carbon pricing is key for cost-efficient emissions abatement and climate financing. They recommend integrating the cost of CO2 emissions in the price of carbon-intensive products and activities wider in the economy. Extending the scope of the EU ETS to sectors such as heating and cooling and transport needs to be further evaluated.

In addition to emissions reductions, carbon dioxide will need to be removed from the atmosphere in order to reach carbon neutrality. CO2 removal technologies should be duly recognised in the legislation and be supported to achieve market maturity.

Fortum, Vattenfall and Statkraft see electrification as the most efficient, flexible and sustainable way to decarbonise the economy, in particular industry, transport, heating and cooling. This will be enabled through stronger interconnectors between regions, competitive low-carbon power supply and cross sectoral flexibility.

The Nordic utilities highlight that mastering the financial and social challenge of the energy transition is crucial for success. In order to succeed, costs and benefits have to be fairly distributed and no member state, consumer or citizen should be left behind.

"There is no going back to an era before climate change. Statkraft invests 100% of our growth in renewables and is Europe's largest producer of renewable energy. We call for an ambitious European Green Deal and we are ready for the challenge. We look forward to contributing to the specific design of appropriate measurements and with solutions in the power sector," said Statkraft CEO Christian Rynning-Tønnesen during a joint Nordic Coalition event in the European Parliament in Brussels on Thursday.