On November 22, 2011, the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) and the Brussels-based think tank Bruegel organised a workshop on "Europe's Way to a Low-Carbon Economy" in the representation of the state of Baden-Württemberg in Brussels. Jos Delbeke, PhD, the European Commission's Director-General for Climate Action, Prof. Jean Pisani-Ferry, Director of Bruegel, Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Wolfgang Franz, President of ZEW and Chairman of the German Council of Economic Experts, Dr. Georg Zachmann, Researcher at Bruegel, and Prof. Dr. Andreas Löschel, Head of the ZEW Research Department “Environmental and Resource Economics, Environmental Management”, were the speakers. Representatives of the EU Commission, of public institutions, of the industrial and the financial sector as well as researchers attended the workshop.
Delbeke outlined the EU’s approach to reducing its carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 80 per cent until 2050 compared to 1990. Besides the shaping of the future emissions trading scheme, he also addressed emissions standards for private cars, improvements in energy efficiency, the competitiveness of EU firms, and "carbon leakage". Löschel backed up Delbeke's presentation by means of macroeconomic and sectoral results of ZEW simulations. The results illustrated the benefits of global climate policy in combination with an international emissions trading scheme for the EU.
Zachmann explained the challenges of the energy transition, while Franz presented policy recommendations with respect to the transition of the German energy system taken from the Annual Report of the German Council of Economic Experts 2011/12. A lively discussion on appropriate measures to promote low carbon technologies concluded the workshop.