The European Parliament tends to overrun the proposals of the European Commission, and even more those of the European Council – the governments of the 27 -. And this Wednesday he has done it again by asking, once again, to increase the ambition of emission cuts. Thus, by 352 votes in favor and 326 against, the European Parliament has asked to raise the emission cuts until 2030 by 60%, above the 55% announced three weeks ago by the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, before the plenary session of Brussels.
Climate activist Greta Thunberg deplores the EU’s green proposal: “We cannot negotiate with nature”
The favorable vote has been conformed to the socialist, liberal, green and unitary left groups, while not all the right and extreme right have been grouped around it: European People’s Party, ECR (Vox group) and ID (group by Le Pen and Salvini). The EPP’s argument for voting against is that increased ambition on emissions cuts may have an impact on employment.
“55% or more? You don’t cut emissions with headlines in the media about numbers and percentages,” said a spokeswoman. popular: “These are the MEPs who have voted in favor of 60% CO2 cuts despite knowing that this destroys jobs.”
“The European Parliament supports the goal of reducing greenhouse gases by 60% by 2030. My amendment becomes the official position of Parliament. We are more leaders than ever in climate ambition!”, Pascal Canfin said, Liberal MEP from Emmanuel Macron’s party and president of the European Parliament’s Environment Committee.
The rapporteur for the Socialist Climate Law, Jytte Guteland from Sweden, said: “This is an important victory for the climate and for our future. With the approval of a 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, compared to 1990 levels, the European Parliament takes a firm position to make Europe’s climate efforts more in line with science and our citizens who want Europe to achieve the goal of climate neutrality and respect the Paris Agreement. The time has come to start negotiations with the European Commission and the EU Council with a clear message: we expect all member states to sign binding climate neutrality targets by 2050 into law at the latest. ”
“We will not achieve the goal of being the first neutral continent by 2050 with the status quo,” said the President of the European Commission during the EU State debate: “We need to do more and better, so we propose to increase by at least 55% the goal for 2030. I recognize that this increase from 40% to 55% for some is excessive and for others it is not enough. Yesterday 170 business leaders wrote to me asking that the goal be at 55% “. Indeed, the European Parliament itself calls for that target to be 60% and, in any case, countries such as Poland block the setting of these figures in the European Council, which must be unanimous.
Meanwhile, the climate activist Greta Thunberg has criticized the proposal of the Community Executive: “Too much for some, in fact, like fossil fuel companies and pressure groups. And not enough for others, like science, or those who think we should deliver on what was promised in the Paris Agreement. Our economy could manage this, but ecosystems could not. And we cannot negotiate with nature. ”
Ernest Urtasun, vice president of the Verdes / ALE group and MEP for Catalunya en Comú, commented: “It is a great success for the climate. The first European climate law brings us closer to realizing the Paris climate goals. The European Parliament is laying the foundations for climate protection for the next 30 years. Wildfires and the thawing in the Arctic are demonstrating the enormous ecological alarm, but we can still avoid a climate collapse. The vote shows that the European Parliament is listening to science and the Fridays for Future movement. With the European Climate Law we are establishing the starting point to limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees. The Law will be an important boost and engine for climate protection, a greener economy and job creation. ”
The European Parliament will now enter into negotiations with the Council and the Commission with its own position: in addition to voting in favor of the maximum amount of CO2 that states can emit, it has called for the creation of an independent climate council of scientists.