In 2017, the Catalan government became the first in Spain, and one of the first in southern Europe, to pass a climate change law.
“It was a turning point, and an ambitious response to the climate change challenge,” says Marta Subirà, the regional government’s secretary of environment and sustainability.
Measures included a commitment to publishing a carbon budget, something that is proving “very difficult to develop and implement.” A committee of experts currently working on the problem hopes to have results next year. Another ambitious measure is a CO2 tax on motor vehicles, based on their emission levels. The Catalan government worked with the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre to find a solution to a lack of data about pre-2006 cars, and money from the tax is earmarked for two funds: one on climate change and another for biodiversity and natural heritage.