Climate: Paris Agreement parties need to pledge more emission cuts, say MEPs
All Parties to the Paris Agreement on climate change will need to step up their emission reduction pledges if the deal is to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees, and this includes the EU’s targets for 2030, say MEPs in a resolution voted on Thursday. Having ratified the Paris deal on Tuesday, the EU is now focusing on the tools needed to achieve its goals, ahead of the next round of talks to take place in Marrakesh next month.
MEPs regret that the sum of all the pledges (Nationally Determined Contributions - NDCs) submitted to date “does not bring the world even close to the two degree target” and stress the “urgent and critically important” need for all Parties to raise their emission reduction commitments. The EU should also commit to further emission reductions for 2030, as the emission reduction pathway in the 2030 climate framework is not in line with the goals set out in the Paris Agreement, they say.
MEPs also recall that action in the European Union alone will not suffice, and call on the Commission and Council to step up their activities to encourage other partners to act too.
The resolution was passed by 467 votes to 94, with 55 abstentions.
MEPs say that the EU should also revisit its own mid- and long-term goals and policy instruments, and call upon the EU Commission to “prepare a mid-century zero emissions strategy for the EU, providing a cost-efficient pathway towards reaching the net zero emissions goal adopted in the Paris agreement”.
MEPs notes with concern that 166 million people were forced to leave their homes because of floods, windstorms, earthquakes or other disasters between 2008 and 2013. They call for the issue of “climate refugees” to be recognised, saying that climate-related developments in parts of Africa and the Middle East could contribute to political instability, economic hardship and an escalation of the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean.
Aviation and shipping
MEPs insist on the need to lower emissions from international aviation and shipping, and call on all the Parties to work through the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to take measures to set appropriate targets before the end of 2016.
Further efforts are needed to mobilise climate finance to meet the Parties’ goal of $100bn by 2020, say MEPs. Additional sources should be delivered, including a financial transactions tax, setting aside some EU ETS emission allowances or revenues from EU and international measures on aviation and shipping emissions.
Amendments tabled by British MEPs and endorsed by the plenary say that the EU should uphold the commitments agreed in Paris in spite of any changes of status of EU member states, and ask that “strong efforts” be made to keep any member states with a changing status in the EU carbon market.
A delegation of MEPs will be present in Marrakesh from 14 to 19 November to participate in the conference.
Procedure: Oral question to Council and the Commission with resolution