Scientists warn of 'critical oversight' in EU green finance rules

(Reuters, 7 Dec 2020) Scientists say rules laying out what can be marketed as a sustainable investment are too lax.

More than 100 scientists have urged the European Commission to address urgently a "critical oversight" in its planned rules on sustainable finance that they say could undermine the bloc's climate change goals.

The European Union last month published a first set of draft criteria for its sustainable finance taxonomy - a system of classifying investments that can be marketed as sustainable.

In an open letter to the Commission on Monday, 123 scientists from 27 countries said Brussels' proposal is not compatible with the EU's target to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

The scientists' concerns centre around a plan to class gas-fuelled power plants as sustainable if they meet an emissions limit of 100 grams of CO2 equivalent per kilowatt hour.

Brussels' advisers - some of whom signed the scientists' letter - had recommended this as a starting threshold that must be reduced every five years, eventually to zero.

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Reuters, 7 Dec 2020: Scientists warn of 'critical oversight' in EU green finance rules