'More Ambition' Needed On Energy Efficiency

SNP MEP Alyn Smith has called for more ambition on energy efficiency after a new EU deal on energy efficiency was agreed.

The European Parliament and Council reached the deal following long negotiations on Wednesday night. It sets out binding measures to reduce energy consumption by 20% by 2020.

Alyn said:

"The UK Government in particular showed an incredible lack of ambition throughout those negotiations, looking for less movement rather than more and failing to engage with the other nations in the EU.

"David Cameron claims his is "the greenest government ever" but he only has to look north to see greater ambition. Scotland's world-leading climate change legislation puts us right at the front of global action and we should be right at the heart of EU negotiations on things like energy efficiency.

"Perhaps then we might have seen more ambition and greater engagement.  I would have liked to see EU governments agree to more ambitious measures, but this is at least a positive step on the road.

"The energy saving target makes sense; it will help to meet our energy security and climate change goals, it will stimulate economic activity, creating jobs, and bringing down energy bills for businesses and households.

"This isn't a perfect agreement, it could be better with a better UK attitude to the EU, but it shows we're moving in the right direction.  It's time Scotland got into these negotiations in our own right to make sure that our world-leading attitude puts us in the prime position to take advantage."