Ahead of the European Council’s discussion about the Fit for 55 Package, the so-called Coalition for Higher Ambition, an alliance of European cities and regions, businesses, business associations and civil society organisations has called upon EU decision-makers to ensure that the upgraded climate and energy legislation increases the EU’s climate ambition to the highest possible level while supporting a green, territorially balanced and socially fair transition in all regions.
Signed by 50 organisations, including several from Central and Eastern Europe, such as the Czech Centre for Transport and Energy, Hungary’s Clean Air Action Group, Slovenia’s FOCUS and Brussels-based associations like the European Alliance to Save Energy and ECOS (Environmental Coalition on Standards), the joint letter highlights that “if the European Green Deal is the EU’s growth strategy, the new climate and energy legislation should be its engine”.
Based on this principle, the letter is calling upon the EU Heads of State to further step up the EU’s climate action by expanding the scope of the EU 2030 target.
“This letter must be a wake-up call for EU leaders that no other option than a strong and well-designed climate and energy legislation under the Fit for 55 Package will be accepted by both the people and the economic actors of Europe,” said Wendel Trio, Director of Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe.
The Coalition is also urging EU decision-makers to strengthen the Emission Trading System and to maintain and increase nationally binding targets under the Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR) covering emissions from road transport, buildings and agriculture.
“Binding targets for renewable energy and energy efficiency are one of the most important prerequisites to decarbonise EU industry as they will stimulate the immediate uptake of existing solutions and investments in innovative technologies,” added Andreas Gürtler, Director of European Industrial Insulation Foundation.
Furthermore, the letter reminds the importance of increasing targets for renewable energy and energy efficiency in line with higher climate ambition and ensuring that they are binding.
The implementation of this package will require mobilising investments. In this regard, the Coalition also urged a synergy between the Fit for 55 Package and national, local and regional EU funding opportunities, while finalising the spending plans of hundreds of billions of euros of EU subsidies. The Fit for 55 Package should send a strong signal that Europe’s recovery will be consistent with the achievement of its climate objectives.