Towards carbon neutrality in a thriving EU industrial sector – markets, investment and financing

EUSEW2020 | Day 3 | Towards carbon neutrality in a thriving EU industrial sector

The European Green Deal will have strong implications for industrial development. One of the first actions is the definition of a European Industrial strategy. Industrial policy has hitherto focused mainly on technological opportunities and growth in new sectors. Now, it must also embrace the need to transform existing industries with the aim of achieving zero GHG emissions by 2050, while creating green jobs. Moreover, recovery from COVID-19 is an opportunity to foster green markets. The session targets industry, government, and academia. It addresses their roles and responsibilities in making the transition to a fossil free industry in Europe – an industry that delivers sustainable products and services, but that also prospers and is competitive at global level. Industry cannot meet the targets of the Paris Agreement on its own in the current policy and market context. Policy is needed for supporting innovation, market creation and deployment.

In a panel discussion with representatives from industry, technology providers and academia two topics will be discussed:

  1. Financing and de-risking of green markets for the tranition towards a decarbonised European Industry in the frame of green recovery from COVID-19;
  2. Research and Innovation activities and policies.

Introductory statements on the two topics will be introduced by the panellists and voted on by the audience.

Discussion questions are:

  • How can costs, benefits and risks be shared between the private and the public sector for making the transition?
  • How can we create trust in the steadiness of industrial and climate policy?
  • How to finance the transition and what opportunities does recovery from COVID-19 create?
  • What governance capacities are needed and how can policy be designed to avoid carbon leakage and industrial decline, or the opposite, windfall profits and overcompensation for industry?

The session will discuss strategies to further decarbonise the industry across the different sectors, such as energy, mobility, agriculture, food and beverage, paper and steel.

The debate is aligned with the goals proposed by the European Green Deal, the Paris Agreement, and the Sustainable Development Goals. It will support the formulation of the required Research and Innovation actions in industry and in governance, in order to achieve the ambitious goal of a decarbonised European industry.

The session is organised by the H2020 projects DEEDS, INNOPATHS, and REINVENT, in cooperation with Solar Heat Europe and Bioenergy Europe


Senior Scientist
Professor of Resources and Environment Policy
University College London
Professor of Technology and Society
Lund University
Director Energy & Public Affairs
Solid Solar Energy Heating and Cooling