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40% of EU budget should be dedicated to greening the economy, EESC says

(EurActiv, 9 Nov 2018) The EU’s next multi-annual budget (2021-2027) should dedicate 40% of spending to the low-carbon economy and high-quality jobs, said Rudy de Leeuw, a delegate at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), an EU advisory body.

“Europe needs to green earmark a significant share of current investment schemes as well as add an additional €200 billion,” de Leeuw told the press in Brussels on Thursday (8 November).

This means the EU has to mobilise more than a trillion euros (€1,115 billion) over the 2021-2027 period in order to put the bloc on a low-carbon economy pathway, he specified.

De Leeuw was referring to an EESC opinion for a European Finance-Climate Pact, adopted in the wake of a landmark IPCC report which showed that warming beyond 1.5C will unleash a frightening set of consequences that can only be avoided with an in-depth global economic and social transformation.

“The next multiannual financial framework (2021-2027) must promote economic development and jobs and enable the EU to achieve its objectives and contribute to the transition to a low-carbon economy by 2050,” the EESC opinion reads.

“In a business-as-usual scenario, the changes in climate expected by 2080 would make households across the EU €190 billion worse off each year at constant prices (purely to meet the cost of insurance to cover climate damage), if no adaptation measures are taken,” it adds.

The EESC’s opinion was published ahead of crucial negotiations to finalise the adoption of the EU budget for the period 2021-2027.

Its proposed 40% earmarking for climate action is almost twice bigger than the European Commission’s own proposal. When it tabled its long-term budget proposal in May, the EU executive suggested dedicating 25% of EU spending on the low-carbon transition, up from 20% in the previous period (2014-2020). The European Parliament, for its part, proposed a 30% target.

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EurActiv, 9 Nov 2018: 40% of EU budget should be dedicated to greening the economy, EESC says