At the European level, sustainable finance was included for the first time in the European Commission's Action Plan for the creation of a Capital Markets Union in mid-September 2015, which focused on demanding uniform labelling for green investment products throughout Europe.
The European Commission set out its first concrete sustainability goals with regard to the ‘Environmental’ area in its Action Plan for Financing Sustainable Growth published in March 2018. The European Commission then specified the goal of limiting global warming in the growth strategy formulated in the European Green Deal of December 2019. This provides for reducing net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the EU to zero by 2050.
With the EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy 2020-2024 of March 2020, sustainability goals in the ‘Social’ and ‘Governance’ areas also received increased attention.
The Renewed Sustainable Finance Strategy and the climate policy Fit for 55 package of July 2021 for their part make clear reference to the environmental sector. They call for GHG emissions to be reduced by 55 per cent by 2030 against the 1990 baseline.