As Climate Finance Week Ireland 2023 continues, additional EU Taxonomy Delegated Acts were, as expected, published in the Official Journal this week reflecting the continuing evolution of the EU sustainable finance framework, and the growing focus on the impact of climate change on biodiversity.

Amending EU Taxonomy Climate Delegated Act

The original Climate Delegated Act, which sets out technical screening criteria (TSC) for economic activities which can make a substantial contribution to climate change mitigation and climate change adaptation, has been amended again (following the July 2022 amendment which included certain nuclear and gas energy activities). The changes apply from 1 January 2024 (save for a small number which will apply from 1 January 2025).

The latest amendments add TSC for additional activities. For climate change mitigation, these include some manufacturing activities for components for low-carbon transport and electrical equipment and some transitional activities in waterborne transport and aviation where zero-carbon solutions aren’t yet sufficiently advanced. For climate change adaptation, these include activities enabling adaptation to the unavoidable effects of climate change (e.g. desalination and services for preventing and responding to climate-related disasters / emergencies).

A small number of technical changes were also made to some existing TSC to make them clearer and more usable.

New EU Taxonomy Environmental Delegated Act

TSC for the four remaining environmental objectives under the EU Taxonomy Regulation are set out in a new Delegated Act which will apply from 1 January 2024.

This Delegated Act also sets out criteria for determining whether these economic activities cause significant harm to any of the other environmental objectives, and amends the Taxonomy Disclosures Delegated Act to ensure consistency of disclosure requirements, and to correct some technical errors.

The Commission separately noted that further work will be needed on bringing other sectors and activities (e.g. agriculture, forestry and fishing) into scope.