Sunday

25th Jun 2017

Germany, France rubbish unilateral 30% cuts in emissions

On the eve of the European Commission's unveiling of a key study on how the EU can sharply ratchet up its climate promise of cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, the bloc's two most powerful members have torpedoed the initiative.

The EU has long promised to move from its current level of cuts in emissions of 20 percent up to 30 percent on 1990 levels by 2020 - but only if other major powers make comparable reductions.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

The paper is widely expected to show how the EU can make the leap with little additional cost and with large benefits in terms of providing incentives for the development of green technologies. Brussels is very concerned that China, the US and other states are stealing a march on the old continent in this new realm of investment.

But on Tuesday, Germany and France jointly dismissed the proposals ahead of their publication.

"We have shared our concerns at the commission's proposal," French industry minister Christian Estrosi told reporters at a joint news conference with German economy minister Rainer Bruederle.

Mr Estrosi stressed that the EU can make the additional cuts, but under the same proposed bargain as before, that other countries must make similar efforts.

"The European Union is ready to adopt the 30 percent figure if other major economies make comparable undertakings," he said.

"We have the same analysis," Mr Bruederle added.

"We believe that after the failure of the Copenhagen summit, we must give ourselves a bit more time."

Business groups are also lobbying hard against the proposal, with Business Europe, the trade association of some of Europe's biggest corporations, writing to the commission on Tuesday criticising the idea of a unilateral jump to 30 percent cuts.

US leaves Paris climate deal

Trump said Paris deal “punishes the United States”, even though treaty leaves it up to nations to determine own climate contribution.

Trump delays climate decision

The White House said it would take more time to decide if the US should remain part of the Paris climate agreement, while talks are underway in Bonn.

Column / Crude World

Nord Stream 2: The elephant in the room

The European Commission should provide a thorough impact assessment of Nord Stream 2, a project that appears to go against all of its Energy Union objectives.

News in Brief

  1. Merkel and Macron hold symbolic joint press conference
  2. Juncker has 'no' clear idea of kind of Brexit UK wants
  3. Belgian PM calls May's proposal on EU citizens 'vague'
  4. UK lacks support of EU countries in UN vote
  5. Spain to command anti-smuggler Mediterranean force
  6. Estonia confirms opposition to Nord Stream 2 pipeline
  7. Ireland and Denmark outside EU military plan
  8. EU leaders renew vows to uphold Paris climate deal

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. EPSUOn Public Services Day, Stop Austerity! Workers Need a Pay Rise!
  2. EGBAOnline Gambling: The EU Court Rejects Closed Licensing Regimes In Member States
  3. World VisionFaces of Today, Leaders of Tomorrow: Join the Debate on Violence Against Girls - 29 June
  4. ECR GroupThe EU Must Better Protect Industry from Unfair Competition
  5. Malta EU 2017Better Protection for Workers From Cancer-Causing Substances
  6. EPSUAfter 9 Years of Austerity Europe's Public Sector Workers Deserve a Pay Rise!
  7. Dialogue PlatformGlobalised Religions and the Dialogue Imperative. Join the Debate!
  8. UNICEFEU Trust Fund Contribution to UNICEF's Syria Crisis Response Reaches Nearly €200 Million
  9. EUSEW17Bringing Buildings Into the Circular Economy. Discuss at EU Sustainable Energy Week
  10. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceCan an Ideal Body Weight Lead to Premature Death?
  11. Malta EU 2017End of Roaming Charges: What Does It Entail?
  12. World VisionWorld Refugee Day, a Dark Reminder of the Reality of Children on the Move

Latest News

  1. Macron’s investment screening idea watered down by leaders
  2. Leaders unimpressed by May’s offer to EU citizens
  3. New Irish PM praises unscripted nature of EU summits
  4. EU extends sanctions on Russia
  5. UK's universities set 'Brexit wish list'
  6. Decision on post-Brexit home for EU agencies postponed
  7. May's offer on citizens’ rights dismissed as ‘pathetic’
  8. 'Historic' defence plan gets launch date at EU summit