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 Full text 
Tuesday, 17 September 2019 - Strasbourg Provisional edition

Preparation for the Climate Action Summit and the Sustainable Development Goals Summit in New York (debate)

  Bas Eickhout, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group. – Mr President, I would like to thank the Commissioner. This Friday will be the start of a week of action, a week of global action, of many citizens on the streets, and they have been referred to many times already, but they are asking for much more action than the world is taking right now, including Europe.

Commissioner, I know this is probably going to be one of your last plenaries, but to be very honest, you must have noticed that your speaking notes on climate action of Europe have not changed that much over the last two years. They have always referred to the fact that we have a 2030 package in place, that we are trying to get to carbon neutrality but still have not achieved it, and that we’re the only continent achieving something. I don’t think this is the speech that people are asking for. People are asking for more action; people are asking for politicians to listen to science, and we’re not doing that. The science is very clear: we have 10 years. Ten years to make sure that we are preparing for a new economy – and we have to deliver on that. That means that Europe needs to increase its ambition. I think that there is a bit of change with the new Commission potentially, but I think it’s also very important that we do want to know what exactly they are going to say, what exactly are they going to do in that climate law? I think there you have an important role, because if I talk to the people of your DG, I don’t feel that there is this urgency. There will maybe be a climate law and then there will be a long set of deliberations on what to do after that. We expect Europe to increase its ambition to at least -55% next year, before Paris starts. That’s what people are asking for, the minimum to change; otherwise, the people on the streets will again be disappointed by the lack of action by the world, and certainly also by Europe.

Last updated: 30 September 2019Legal notice