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Trumpian cuts on the cards for EU climate research?

(EurActiv, 15 Nov 2018) Following the European Parliament’s call for a ‘net zero emissions’ goal for 2050, one might have expected MEPs to support a bigger budget for research on low-carbon technologies in the new Horizon Europe programme. Instead, they are considering cuts by 1.35%, writes Theo Mitchell.

Theo Mitchell is director of Enerfair Engagement and a senior advisor to Bellona Europa, a Norwegian environmental organisation.

Since taking office in 2016, President Donald Trump and his administration in the US have proposed two budgets featuring major cuts to climate and energy data collection and analysis – data which has historically been made available to the public at no cost.

This may seem like a distant concern for Europe right now but, as Washington-based think tank, the Center for American Progress, has pointed out, these cuts not only threaten the American scientific community, they also threaten the rest of the world’s understanding of how our climate is changing.

That is why, on 28th November, Bellona is working with the Center for American Progress and its Founder, John Podesta – former Chief of Staff to Bill Clinton, Campaign Manager for Hillary Clinton, and Climate and Energy Counsellor to Barack Obama – to convene a Hearing in the European Parliament on the future of EU funding for climate science.

Analysts at the Center for American Progress have concluded that in the absence of additional funding from elsewhere (Europe, perhaps), the future of essential data used to underpin scientific research such as the recent IPCC Special Report on 1.5C is under threat.

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EurActiv, 15 Nov 2018: Trumpian cuts on the cards for EU climate research?