The economic crisis has distracted attention from environmental challenges and sustainable development, but urgent action is needed at European and global level. Greening our economy is not just an end in itself but can help Europe out of the crisis – a more sustainable economic model will create huge opportunities for employment and wealth creation.
It’s also a question of solidarity – guaranteeing a decent environment for all and supporting the developing world, where the worst impacts of climate change are already being felt. But also solidarity between generations, because this planet is borrowed from our children, not inherited from our parents.
Leading on the environment
The S&D Group are the main driving force for environmental legislation in the European Parliament, resulting in legislation benefiting citizens’ daily lives – on energy efficiency, research and innovation in clean technologies, sustainable transport networks, restrictions on hazardous substances, limits on CO2 emissions from vehicles and many more. We believe in the long-term benefits of sustainable development and a fair balance between social, economic and environmental concerns. We reject the right-wing approach of sacrificing environmental measures to short-term corporate interests.
Greening Europe’s agriculture and fisheries
Agriculture and fisheries have immense importance for the environment. We want to see radical reform of the Common Agricultural Policy to promote sustainable, high quality foods; long term management of natural resources; measures to combat climate change; and jobs in rural areas. On fisheries we need sustainable policies to allow fish stocks to recover, end overfishing, eliminate discards and regionalise fisheries management to achieve a healthy marine and freshwater environment.