Carbon neutral Iceland by 2040

Iceland’s public policy is to become a carbon-neutral country by 2040. A governmental initiative started developing from 2017 and has been introduced in 2018. The main objective of the climate action plan is to reduce human-created greenhouse gas emissions in accordance with Iceland’s efforts to fulfil its commitments to the Paris Convention by 2030.

The essence of this program appears in the proposals for 34 actions, which should contribute to emissions reduction and increased carbon sequestration. The actions are such as regulation changes, economic actions, funded projects or grants by the state government. Building up cooperation with the industries and labor market is also essential in being able to reach the intended goal.

There are two main focuses in the plan: energy exchange in transport, with special emphasis on electrification in road transport; and carbon sequestration efforts, where forestry and land reclamation play a key role and greenhouse gas emissions through wetland recovery will be systematically reduced.

The plan also includes actions related to waste, agriculture, fisheries, education and more. About 500 million ISK will be spent on innovation due to climate change and the Climate Fund will be established to manage such projects. About 800 million ISK will be spent on various actions, such as research on ocean acidification and climate change adaptation, improved carbon accounting, international work, and education.

Keywords: carbon neutral, energy exchange, carbon binding, electrification, waste, agriculture, fisheries, Iceland