Tories Stick Head In Sand On Climate Change

05 July 2011
Alyn Smith MEP has today (Tuesday) criticised the European Parliament vote on the EU's climate change policy which could have toughened the EU's stance on greenhouse gas emissions, but was instead so weakened by amendments from the conservative and centre-right groups that the result saw the final report rejected altogether by a majority of MEPs.
The report was drafted by Alyn's Dutch Green colleague, Bas Eickhout MEP.
Alyn said:
"This hijack by the motley crew of the Parliament's centre right, right, eurosceptic and outright bonkers MEPs is really frustrating and, furthermore, shows David Cameron's rhetoric on tackling climate change is just that - rhetoric.  It is a shame he and his colleagues cannot match the SNP's, and Scotland's, climate ambition.
"We had to act in the final approval vote to bin our own report, which is a real shame, but it was the least bad option if we were to avoid actually going backwards. The EU's current 20% emissions target is holding the EU back, undermining the EU's emissions trading scheme, and acting as a barrier to proactive emissions reductions efforts and investments in green technologies, and hence job creation. Plenty of European companies have also called for a 30% reduction in emissions, seeing it as a catalyst to create new jobs and business opportunities.
"And it is not just companies that want to see this target put in place. Over the last week I have had hundreds of emails, if not over a thousand emails, from my constituents asking for support for this increase. Sadly it seems that the conservative MEPs have their heads stuck deep in the sand if they are so able to ignore the good sense of setting this target.
"All in all, a frustrating day in Strasbourg."