Pittella: The COP21 ratification shows that a united EU can deliver; this is the EU that citizens want
In the presence of UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon and French minister Ségolène Royale, the Parliament today backed the ratification of the COP 21 world climate agreement reached last year in Paris.
S&D president Gianni Pittella said:
“The EU, and especially the Progressives in Europe, have worked intensely to make the Paris climate conference a success, with an ambitious deal and fast implementation, so that the EU cannot lag behind countries like the United States or China when it comes to ratification.
“An efficient and responsible answer to the global climate risk is the best legacy we can leave to future generations. There is no time to waste, or the human, economic and environmental consequences will become unbearable.
“For once the European Union has used its full potential for a fast-track ratification of an international agreement. It proves that the EU can react on time and efficiently when national capitals put the common good ahead of their petty interests. This is the EU that citizens want."
S&D vice-president for sustainability, Kathleen Van Brempt MEP, said:
“By giving its consent to the ratification of the Paris climate agreement, the European Parliament is keeping the member states’ minds on the job. Although most member states still have to ratify the Paris agreement, the Union now ensures a swift start for COP21.
“The EU and its member states however will have to practise what they preach, ensuring concrete investments in clean technology, renewable energy and energy efficiency. For some member states in Central and Eastern Europe this will be a difficult task as they are confronted with energy infrastructures which belong to the past.
“Therefore, the EU needs to help these countries to leapfrog into the low carbon area, creating for example a just transition fund (using revenues of Emission Trading System’s auctions) to facilitate redeployment of workers in affected industries, business creation, training and social protection. Solidarity between member states will be key if we want to make the Paris agreement a success.”