Within 12 months, greenhouse gas emissions in the Netherlands must be reduced by at least 25 percent in comparison to 1990, the country's Supreme Court said in a ruling on Friday. The Court upheld lower court decisions that said the case was a human rights issue, and in turn ordered the emissions reduction, which Dutch environmental assessment agency PBL said was an unobtainable and "out of reach" goal.
"A moderation in growth or a limited decline in aviation" will not hurt the Dutch economy, but will benefit the environment, research agency CE Delft concluded in a study commissioned by Natuur en Milieu. The researchers found that there is no scientific basis for five important arguments often used as reasons not to limit growth in the aviation sector, NOS reports.
The Netherlands could still achieve the emission reduction goals set in the so-called Urgenda ruling, if it closes three almost new coal-fired power stations at the start of next year, research agency CE Delft concluded in a study done at the request of Natuur & Milieu, Greenpeace and the Lung Fund. Closing the coal plants will also not be very expensive, costing 760 million euros, the Volkskrant reports.
The government's climate plans will hit low-income earners in the Nehterlands the hardest, while businesses will see little change in their climate taxes, according to a study by research agency CE Delft on behalf of environmental group Milieudefensie, the Volkskrant reports.
The previous Energy Agreement, implemented in 2013, already hit low income earners harder than high income earners. The new Climate and Energy Agreement - talks on which are expected to start at the end of this month - will increase this inequality, the researchers conclude.
Minister Henk Kamp of Economic Affairs has no intention to close the new coal plants in the Netherlands, despite concerns that the country will not meet its climate targets without doing so. According to him, the new plats "are the cleanest in Europe, we would be crazy to close them", he said in WNL on Sunday
The Dutch government will have to close at least one or two of the brand new coal plants if they hope to reach the target set in the so-called Urgenda ruling, according to an as yet confidential study by CE Delf that newspaper Trouw managed to get its hands on.