Wednesday, October 20

Oslo would become the world’s first emission-free capital. Now the council’s own climate targets are missing.

By 2030, emissions in Oslo should be cut by 95 percent and the city should become the world’s first emission-free capital.

Oslo will become world champion in climate cuts. But promises will apparently be broken. – The City Council cancels its own climate targets, says Hallstein Bjercke in Oslo Venstre.

The case is being updated.

In 2030, greenhouse gas emissions in Oslo will be reduced by 95 percent compared to 2009. The red-green city council with the Labor Party, the Socialist People’s Party and the MDGs has promised this to the voters.

When the three parties took power in Oslo in 2015, and then gained renewed voter confidence in 2019, they presented a series of quantified targets for emissions cuts.

Each year, the effect of the measures is presented in the municipality’s own climate budget. It was presented today, together with the Oslo budget. It turns out that most, maybe all, goals are likely to fail:

With today’s course, Oslo will not reach its target, on budget.

Should cut emissions in half in a few years

The city council has promised big cuts in just a few years. By 2023, Oslo will cut 52 percent of emissions, that is, by half. 2023 is only two years away. So far, Oslo has, at best, cut half of what it takes to reach the goal.

The budget establishes that “it will be demanding to reach the goal of 2023”. The city council is working to implement more measures, it is indicated in the budget. This is how the city council “will approach the achievement of the objectives.”

Hallstein Bjercke, leader of the group in Oslo Venstre, interprets the budget as if the city council admits that the goal cannot be achieved.

– Most disappointingly, the city council cancels its own climate targets for 2023 and is further than ever from reaching the 2030 target, Bjercke tells Aftenposten.

He adds that the first impression of the budget is that the Oslo budget is too little green.

The ambitions of the City Council

These were the quantified emission reduction targets presented by the city council parties in 2015:

  • By 2020, greenhouse gas emissions would be reduced by 50% from 1990 levels. This was later adjusted to a 41% reduction measured starting in 2009. The adjustment was to fit the statistics of the state. In practice, this would mean equal greenhouse gas emissions.
  • By the end of 2023, greenhouse gas emissions should be reduced by at least 52 percent from the 2009 level.
  • By 2030, emissions should be cut by 95 percent and Oslo should be the world’s first emission-free capital.
  • All cars in Oslo must be emission-free by 2030.

In addition, targets were set for emission-free ports by 2025 and emission-free waste management by 2030.

Here, Councilor Raymond Johansen introduced his new City Council, in 2016. The City Council promised very significant cuts in greenhouse gas emissions in Oslo. Apparently, the objectives will not be achieved.

Managed only 16 percent in 2019

However, this is not the first time that there have been signs that ambitious climate goals may be difficult to achieve.

In March, Aftenposten reported that the latest 2019 Norwegian Environment Agency statistics showed there is still a long way to go before the goal of a 41 percent cut in 2020 – by then, only 16 percent had been cut. percent.

Official emissions figures for 2020 won’t be ready until 2022, but according to the Climate Agency’s calculations from September last year, emissions will only be reduced by 25 percent in 2020, compared to 2009.

The goal of 2023 does not seem to be within our reach either. According to projections from the Norwegian Climate Agency, emissions from Oslo will be 22 percentage points above the target figure in 2023.

On the goal for 2030 and the sub-goal in 2023, the agency writes:

“The objectives will be demanding to achieve and will require new measures and strict regulatory measures to be implemented.”

If a number of conditions prevail, both at the national and local levels, Oslo can succeed in reducing emissions by 75 percent by 2030, according to the Climate Agency.

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