The Covid-19 pandemic led to the postponement of the UN’s COP26 Climate Summit in Glasgow until 2021. The S&D Group understands the reasons behind this choice, as now all governments’ efforts must be focused on saving people’s lives. No one should, however, use this postponement to put into question the priority of the European Green Deal and the legislative proposal on the EU Climate Law.
S&D rapporteur on Climate Law, and environment committee spokesperson, Jytte Guteland, stated:
“The fight against climate change cannot be lock-downed. Our work with the EU Climate Law and more in general the European Green Deal continues as planned. This remains an absolute priority for our Group and for the future of the next generations. While we respect the decision to postpone the COP26 Summit in Glasgow in November this year until 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we want to be clear that our commitment to fight climate change remains unchanged.
“Regrettably, despite this horrific pandemic, we are still in a climate and environment emergency that requires immediate action. This continues to be key and the Climate Law will be the most central framework to ensure that the Union reaches its goal to become climate-neutral by 2050. We will not postpone the absolute priority to stop global warming and neither this legislative process. The S&Ds climate efforts will not go into quarantine as this is the fight to ensure a sustainable future for our future generations.”
S&D vice-president responsible for the European Green Deal, Miriam Dalli, said:
“After the spread of Covid-19, it is even more urgent to launch a new economic model based on a more green and sustainable development. The COP26 can be postponed. Our fight against climate changes cannot. Nor will be our commitment and efforts to provide the EU, with no further delay, with an ambitious Climate Law and a courageous European Green Deal up to our citizens’ expectations.
“The world after Coronavirus will be different. We will be facing a period of recession and stagnation worldwide with dramatic social and economic consequences. Now, more than ever, Europe will be called upon to invest in the green economy, adopting all the needed legislative measures to make the recovery as fast and smooth as possible. Exploiting the Coronavirus crisis as an excuse to postpone the change, or rely again on past and out-dated receipts will not only be wrong, but also narrow-minded toward our citizens. We won’t allow it.”