The European Parliament today voted its position on EU energy goals for 2030, backing out of the level of action needed to combat climate change.
MEPs voted on three files of the ‘Clean Energy Package’ of climate legislation for the next crucial decade for climate action. The positions adopted today will now be taken forward into negotiations with EU governments.
On the energy efficiency file, campaigners were disappointed that MEPs supported a binding target of 35% by 2030, as opposed to 40%. A 40% target was previously supported in the Environment and Industry committees of the Parliament during the legislative process in 2017. Binding national targets for efficiency targets were also voted down by MEPs.
Clémence Hutin, energy efficiency campaigner for Friends of the Earth Europe said; “The EU Parliament has been a vocal supporter of energy efficiency and its benefits for years and has previously backed a 40% target four times. Today’s position falls short: when it came to the crunch MEPs folded and opted for a disappointing 35%.
“The EPP’s role in bringing down the level of ambition in particular was deplorable. Too many MEPs are still clinging to a wasteful energy model that is costing us the planet, and keeping up to 1 in 4 Europeans in energy poverty.”
Renewable Energy Directive
The Parliament voted for an EU-wide target of 35% renewables by 2030 but crucially without national targets and without much-needed safeguards to prevent large amounts of bioenergy in the mix.
Commenting Molly Walsh, renewables campaigner for Friends of the Earth Europe said;
“On the one hand it is positive to see that the Parliament has gone for the strongest position of all the three European institutions, on the other hand, this target only looks ambitious in the light of the severe inadequacy of the targets proposed by the European Commission and by Member States.
“What is heartening is to see energy democracy provisions strengthened by MEPs today. Creating a framework that will allow communities and citizens to take ownership of the energy system and benefit from the energy transition is the one thing that could be a truly positive signal from Brussels.”
Friends of the Earth Europe is calling for a fossil free European energy system by 2030.
MEPs go for a 35% target for renewables but missing nationally binding targets. Welcome only becuase it is stronger than European Commission or Council decision but still nothing near what we need for a safe future. #CleanEnergyEU pic.twitter.com/dHdRhS9kI1
— Friends of the Earth (@foeeurope) January 17, 2018