- Category: Press Releases
- Published: Wednesday, 22 January 2014 11:12
[Brussels, 22 January 2014 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE] – CAN Europe  is deeply disappointed with what promises to be an unambitious white paper from the European Commission on the EU's 2030 climate and energy framework, which will be released today in Brussels. If its ambition is not raised, this paper could lock the EU into such a low level of climate action it would make keeping the EU's international pledge to stay below 2 degrees of global warming all but unattainable. 
"This proposal is not in line with science or even the Commission's own analyses of the multiple benefits of swift
climate action," said Wendel Trio of CAN Europe.  "In order to keep its international climate pledges, the EU
must adopt three ambitious, binding targets for greenhouse gas reductions, renewable energy and energy savings.
Sadly, such ambition is lacking in this paper."
The White Paper represents a significant ratcheting down of Commission President Barroso's past aspirations for EU climate policy. Before the Copenhagen climate summit in 2009, Barroso said the "most important issue" was to have binding targets from developed countries. 
"As climate impacts increase, globally and here in Europe, it is unthinkable to decrease EU climate ambition," Trio
continued. "Furthermore, a weak or voluntary renewables target will not provide the investor certainty we need to
kick-start the green economy, create jobs and reduce the cost of decarbonisation."
Today NGOs sounded the alarm in front of the Berlaymont building in Brussels, sending out a Climate SOS to European leaders to put the EU's climate policy back on course.  We call on heads of state and government to re-inject this proposal with the ambition needed to avoid catastrophic climate change. CAN Europe is calling for binding EU-wide targets of at least 55% greenhouse gas reductions, 45% renewable energy share and 40% energy savings.
1- Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe is a coalition of more than 120 NGOs in over 25 European countries
working to prevent dangerous climate change and promote sustainable climate and energy policy in Europe.
2- A -40% GHG target is based on IPCC's 2007 report, which assumed both a peak in global emissions by 2015
and for global emissions to drop to 44 GtCO2-e by 2020. Neither will happen - UNEP estimates emissions
to be at 52 GtCO2-e at best. Therefore, to stay below 2 degrees, UNEP recommends more ambitious
pathways post 2020, in line with the upper end of the EU target to reduce emissions by 80-95% by 2050. A
-40% by 2030 target would put the EU on a pathway to only -80% by 2050.
3- Commission's 2050 Low Carbon Roadmap: ec.europa.eu/clima/policies/roadmap/index_en.htm
Analysis of the impact assessment of the 2030 white paper by the Wuppertal Institute:
4- Excerpts from a 2009 speech by Barroso about the importance of binding targets: http://
5- Hi-res photographs from today's action in front of the Berlaymont will be available from 15:00 today at
6- Reducing greenhouse gas emissions reap large health co-benefits. Improvement in air quality leads
to lower rates of respiratory and cardiovascular diseases and economic gains as health care expenses
decrease, while productivity increases. Contact a spokesperson from the Health and Environment Alliance
(HEAL), listed above, for more information.