S&Ds want ambitious emission reduction commitments with strong financial instruments in the COP21 climate deal
The all-party environment committee in the European Parliament today backed an ambitious mandate for the members attending the UN Paris Climate summit COP21 in December. Led by the Socialists and Democrats, and in particular by the author of the resolution, MEP Gilles Pargneaux, the Parliament calls for legally binding and ambitious emission reduction targets and solid financial instruments to achieve those goals.
MEP Gilles Pargneaux said:
"It is an immense objective: Limiting global temperature rise to 2 degrees is necessary in order to avoid climate change and the natural catastrophes it would bring (drought, floods, food crisis). It would also help limit the exponential growth of climate refugees. In the coming years the number of climate refugees could reach 200 million, even more than war refugees.
"We need limits on our carbon emissions. My report proposes a reduction of at least 40% of greenhouse-gas emissions in the EU by 2030, and the phase out of global carbon emissions by 2050 or shortly thereafter.
"In this fight Europe must be the engine and the model. This is why we support a binding target of 40% energy efficiency and a 30% binding target for renewable energy of total energy consumption in 2030.
"It is clear that the financial aspect will be the cornerstone of the deal in Paris. We need a roadmap in order to meet our commitment as developed countries to provide 100 billion dollars per year for climate finance, so I propose to set a price for carbon emissions that make pollution less profitable.
"Climate change is the fight of the century. The European Parliament must live up to the challenge. After the failure in Copenhagen, the Paris summit can’t afford to be a conference to try, but a conference to decide."
S&D spokesperson on climate, Matthias Groote, said:
"The world is looking at the COP21 in Paris. Climate change continues to be a big deal and we are committed to fight against it - not just in Europe but on a global scale.
"The environmental committee of the European Parliament, however, has understood the crucial importance of long-term solutions. In the interest of our industries and our jobs, we must have a firm political commitment to the reduction of emissions, to renewables as well as energy efficiency.
"Climate change is a conjoint European commitment. This is why we need to integrate an ambitious climate strategy with energy efficiency and further incentives for clean industries. This is why we need three integrated targets and not just one.
"Furthermore, investing in a low-carbon economy means creating new jobs and sustainable paths for innovation and growth."
S&D vice-president Kathleen Van Brempt added:
"As a political group, part of the PES political family, we intend to give maximum support to make the COP21 a real success in the fight against climate change and the intertwined social injustices.
"Therefore we are organising a PES leaders meeting and our own conference on the topic next month in Paris ahead of COP21."
MEPs Kathleen Van Brempt, Matthias Groote, Gilles Pargneaux and Miriam Dalli will be part of the European Parliament’s delegation to the COP21, and they will also take part in a Progressives for Climate event with other Socialist and Democrats leaders on 21 and 22 October.