Hope and disappointment with the COP21 climate agreement

Date

16 Dec 2015

Sections

Energy
Innovation & Enterprise
Sustainable Dev.
Climate & Environment

Press release

The agreement on climate reached by consensus at the COP21 in Paris last weekend was acclaimed by some as being "historical" but GUE/NGL MEPs had mixed feelings and were critical on many points.

Anne-Marie Mineur, who represented GUE/NGL in the European Parliament's delegation to Paris, said: "This is the first time that 195 countries agreed to such a pact. It is a good beginning but we haven't yet reached our goals. I do think that the lobbyists from the fossil fuel industry got a Christmas bonus with this agreement."

"I regret there is no compensation for developing countries, which is a disgrace because we dodged our responsibilities. We need more ambition and to stop using fossil fuels. We need to use renewables and to be better at energy saving. The EU is going in the right direction but I urge the Commission to act now."

For Estefanía Torres: "The Paris agreement is insufficient. The States didn't have the political will to prevail over the vested interests of the oil lobby. People were out in the streets but governments have overridden the interests of the poorest in mankind. What we need are binding ceilings."

Merja Kyllönen, GUE/NGL coordinator on the EP's environment committee, said: "We have a lot of points on paper but the real work begins now. Hopefully humanity will show sufficient wisdom and will take active steps to bring about real change."

She continued: "There's still a long way to go for subsidies for fossil energy to be shifted to retrofitting or energy saving or renewables. And we must remember that 2° warmer will mean that many areas of the world will become uninhabitable. If that happens, the flow of climate refugees coming to Europe will be massive."

João Ferreira said: "When the Paris Agreement was adopted the conditions were not in place that would allow us to think that the objectives will be delivered upon. This is one of the big failures of Paris."

"Many countries, and particularly Latin American countries, were critical of market mechanisms and flexibility mechanisms; these mechanisms have proved perverse and inefficient in reducing emissions. But they're good for business and that's what it's all about. Any enthusiasm for COP21 has to be curbed by a reality check."

 

GUE/NGL Press Contact:

Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20

Nikki Sullings + 32 483 03 55 75

European United Left / Nordic Green Left

European Parliamentary Group

www.guengl.eu