The EU Green Deal

The context of the EU Green Deal

Climate change and environmental degradation are an existential threat to Europe and the world. To overcome these challenges, Europe needs a new growth strategy that transforms the Union into a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy where there are no net emissions of greenhouse gases. By 2050 economic growth is decoupled from resource use no person and no place is left behind.

The “Green Deal” is the EU's new growth strategy that aims to transform the EU into a competitive economy, where economic growth is decoupled from resource use.

The European Green Deal provides a series of actions to:

  • boost the efficient use of resources by moving to a clean, circular economy
  • restore biodiversity and cut pollution

It outlines investments needed and financing tools available, and explains how to ensure a just and inclusive transition.

Main Objectives of this strategy

Help Companies lead transition, using clean products and technologies.

Cut pollution to help human life, animals and plants

Become climate neutral by 2050

Protect EU citizens from environmental risks and impacts

In order to effectively implement the EU Green Deal, the EU needs to design a set of deeply transformative policies and ensure a just transition system for all regions and sectors.

Critical elements of this strategy

260 billions
per year to ensure just transition

The Commission estimated that in order to achieve the  EU Green Deal, climate and energy targets an investment of €260 billion will be required by 2030.

50 new directives
or regulations in the next 2 years

The appendix to the EU Green Deal includes 50 actions to be implemented within 2019- 2021 in the form of regulations or directives related to climate, energy, circular economy, transportation, agriculture, financial services, biodiversity and waste management. It also includes action for updating existing applicable legislations (i.e. NFR).

The EU Green Deal is expected to have implications in almost all key sectors of the Greek economy. Indicative effects include:

Power and utilities

  • Power and Utility companies are facing major challenges driven by decarbonization, which is now crystallized around net-zero targets.
  • The transition in the energy generation mix is key to this, with most scenarios projecting ongoing growth for renewables.
  • Decarbonization strategy (shut down of lignite power plants) is part of the EU Green Deal action plan and was incorporated in the Hellenic Republic Energy and climate national plan.
  • Transition to net zero and coal phase out has significant socio-economic impacts for local communities, where lignite units or coal mines operate. The relevant areas will be supported through the EU Just Transition Mechanism, National Plans and other funding sources in order to ensure smooth transition and long term sustainable development.

Consumer industrial products and Retail

Transition to Circular Economy will require many companies in the sector to apply changes to their operating model in order to meet relevant requirements. Examples of circular economy application include:

  • introducing a regulatory minimum percentage of recycled materials going into the manufacturing of products.

  • requirements to make products easier to recycle with minimum repairability specifications aimed at extending their lifetime.

  • use of economic instruments such as environmental taxation, green tax reforms and improved waste management.


  • New, more ambitious legislations related to building energy performance will be introduced accompanied by funding and incentives for energy efficiency upgrade.

  • EU and the Member States will engage in a ‘renovation wave’ of public and private buildings with the aim to reduce energy bills (which can also reduce poverty) and boost the construction sector and especially SMEs and local jobs.

  • Implementation and promotion of new sustainable development strategies will be increasingly requested for new investments and landmark projects.


  • The EU Green Deal promotes sustainable transports, including electrification of railways and use of clean energy vehicles and at the same time introduces strict fuel consumption and emissions monitoring and reporting requirements for shipping and aviation.

  • Regarding marine transportation, the Green Deal along with the IMO 2050 GHG emissions reduction targets will lead Greek ship owners to invest in alternative fuels and develop sustainable fleets.

Financial services

The Sustainable Finance Regulation will direct funding provided by Greek and international financial institutions, funds and private equity investors towards sustainable investments. The ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) factors will be integrated into financial institutions’ credit rating, shifting financing into sustainable sectors and activities.


Although the EU Green Deal currently does not have specific provisions for tourism, we expect that it is a sector which will be highly affected. Greece's geographical location and natural wealth offer opportunities for the development of sustainable tourism. Key targets of sustainable tourism include:

  • Protection of natural environment, waste management, and cultural resources.

  • Support of the wellbeing of the local communities.

  • Limitation of the environmental impact of tourism-related transport (sea or air transport);

  • Financing of green tourism infrastructure and application of circular economy.

  • Improving the quality of tourism jobs.

COVID-19 and the EU Green Deal

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a lot of discussion and conflicting views on its implications on the implementation of the Green Deal. However, key stakeholders have recently declared their commitment to its achievement and expressed that the need for a green transition is reinforced even further as a framework to boost recovery after the pandemic. Below you may find key announcements, press releases and reports issued by officials from the EU, the commissions and relevant committees:

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