EU budget breakthrough achievable with higher climate ambition, say campaigners
Brussels – Emphasising green spending in the next one trillion plus euros EU budget is the surest way to reach an agreement on the deal while leading the bloc to a more resilient recovery from the pandemic, say campaigners at CEE Bankwatch Network ahead of today’s European Council.
Discussions today among Member States focus on a proposal from the Commission for unlocking 750 billion euros with its new recovery instrument, Next Generation EU. Yet while the proposal should be guided by principles of the European Green Deal, it still lacks explicit restrictions on fossil fuels investments.
Even as Member States disagree on how the proposed increase from the Commission will be financed, countries back overwhelmingly a sustainable recovery. To date every state except for Poland has pledged support for the EU’s ambition of achieving a net-zero emissions economy by 2050, and in a letter this week to Council president, mayors of the Visegrad four capitals called for increasing greenhouse gas reduction targets to 55 per cent by 2030.
Raphael Hanoteaux, EU funds policy officer at CEE Bankwatch Network, said “There is more common ground among Member States then they let on. Even in central and eastern Europe, where heel dragging towards progress on climate change is at its highest, countries recognise that a green EU budget is a win win.
A sustainable, just and timely transition is possible in central and eastern Europe only if we restrict funding for fossil fuels of any kind and set a target spending level of at least 50 per cent on projects that address the threat of climate change. We know that tying the pandemic response to green stimulus is the surest way to economic recovery, so the blueprint is in front of Member States.”
For more information contact:
Raphael Hanoteaux, EU funds policy officer
CEE Bankwatch Network