Portugal's Presidency of the Council of the European Union will be dealing with the most pressing environmental, social and governance challenges. Climate change will be of particular importance, as well as the consequent need to make the economy of the European Union more sustainable, in line with the vision and strategy defined in the European Green Deal and the Paris Agreement, while also bearing in mind the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Portugal has been a pioneer in this area. The approval of the Circular Economy Action Plan, through Council of Ministers Resolution No. 190-A/2017, of 11 December, set out the guidelines for Portugal to implement the transition to an economy that promotes the efficient and productive use of resources. The Roadmap for Carbon Neutrality 2050, approved by Council of Ministers Resolution No. 107/2019, of 1 July, plots the course for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions so that the balance between emissions and removals from the atmosphere will be zero by 2050, while also allowing the main vectors of decarbonisation to be identified. Thus, we will be able to clearly define the guidelines for reducing emissions in the different sectors of the national economy, in conjunction with fostering the circular economy, the alignment of fiscal and funding policies and assuring a fair and cohesive transition, backed by society. Also of note is the National Energy and Climate Plan, approved on 10 July 2020, which establishes national goals for renewable energy and energy efficiency and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, as well as the steps to be taken towards decarbonisation of society over the next decade. Portugal's Presidency of the Council of the European Union is aligned with these national goals.