FIn the face of the multiple ecological, economic, social and democratic crises in which we are immersed, it is crucial to paralyze fear or demobilize defeat. Solutions, if not easy to implement, are known and available. And if some damage is already irreversible, there is still time to save with a substantial, serious response and allow ourselves to achieve our ambitions.
Although Europe and France aim to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 and to reduce emissions by 55% by 2030 compared to 1990, how can we explain that the transition trajectories are still so vague and few tools are being used? However, more and more accounts are converging. The figure given to Prime Minister Jean Pisani-Ferry on May 22 leads to an additional investment of €66 billion annually.
This figure is consistent with a study by the Rousseau Institute (“2% at 2°C”) published in 2022, which details the financing needs by sector and their distribution between public and private. The results gave rise to the report’s title: For France to reach carbon neutrality in 2050, we need to invest around 2.3% of GDP (€57 billion) every year on top of what we currently spend. In addition, it will be necessary to redirect all current costs related to our economic life (transportation, industry, agriculture, construction, energy production, etc.) in the transition direction.
The study also describes how to use this capital and details 70 quantitative public policy proposals. It also outlines the main economic benefits and explains how all these costs are to be financed. This economic and political road map represents an advanced and detailed form of environmental planning and a way to confront the government’s vague speeches and goals with the reality of the means used.
The state as a catalyst for change
We are currently very far from the mark: the state needs to invest at least 36 billion euros more per year than it currently does to reach the mentioned 57 billion and really put the country on the path to carbon neutrality.
Public support efforts should mainly focus on the thermal and energy renovation of buildings (14 billion euros per year), the transition to agroecology (3 billion), as well as the bonus for the conversion of enhanced and extended thermal vehicles (2.5 billion). With massive investment (1.3 billion) in train, public transport and cycling alternatives.
Source: Le Monde