"Only ambitious targets for renewable energy can sustain Europe's economy and ultimately lead to an energy sector powered entirely by renewable energy."
Brussels, 21 March 2014: A group of some 50 European policy makers across party lines has called upon the European Commission to drastically increase the targets for renewable energy in the context of this week's decision to set climate and energy targets for 2030. Current and former Members of Parliament and politicians from 15 member states today concluded in Brussels that "self-interested actions and a lack of cooperation put Europe's resilience, its society, economy and climate at risk. Therefore, only ambitious targets for renewable energy can sustain Europe's economy and ultimately lead to an energy sector powered entirely by renewable energy." The gathering was initiated by the World Future Council and supported by the Climate Service Center and EUFORES, a parliamentary group based in Brussels.
According to the World Future Council, the current political debate on climate and energy policies is dominated by voices that claim renewable energy compromises economic growth and industrial competitiveness. However, the World Future Council states that there is broad evidence that a decentralised and people-centered renewable energy system creates local jobs, stabilises the economy by decreasing dependency on expensive fossil fuel imports, and results in revenues for communities and regions.
Rebecca Harms, Member of the European Parliament (MEP) and Co-president of the European Greens/EFA: "The European Union must return to its leadership role – morally, politically, and economically – in tackling climate change by deciding on strong policy priorities. 100% renewable energy is the prerequisite to tackling climate change. It is therefore essential to send a clear signal to our citizens, investors and the world that the EU is determined to pursue its renewables-based system."
Fiona Hall, MEP and Member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe: "To ensure economic prosperity, industrial competitiveness and democratic stability, Europe must decisively scale up its renewable energy share. There is no reason to hesitate to adopt a long-term strategy like a 100% target when it comes to renewable energy technologies. Renewables and energy efficiency are ready to be implemented all over Europe. It is simply a matter of decisiveness about doing what is necessary."
Maciej Nowicki, former Environment Minister of Poland: "The hearing was very encouraging because it showed that there is political will and decisiveness among European parliamentarians to build a fossil free society. What we need is more collaboration. We need to intensify cooperation with the Commission as well as with national parliaments so that they can obtain more ownership of EU legislation. This would definitely lead to a more effective implementation of the policies forged in Brussels."
World Future Council
The World Future Council brings the interests of future generations to the centre of policy-making. Its 50 eminent members from around the globe have already successfully promoted change. The Council addresses challenges to our common future and provides decision makers with effective policy solutions. The World Future Council is registered as a charitable foundation in Hamburg, Germany. For more information, visit www.worldfuturecouncil.org