PES environment ministers pledge to build on new ambitious emissions target

14/12/2020

PES environment ministerial videoconference

PES environment ministerial videoconference

Thanks to socialists and democrats Europe is on course to lead the world on reducing emissions, PES environment ministers stated today as they welcomed the new emissions target and pledged to continue pushing for a more sustainable Europe.

The new goal - which was endorsed by the European Council last week – builds on the progressive efforts to tackle climate change in the Commission’s flagship European Green Deal, led by European Commission Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans. Under the new target, Member States will aim for a net reduction of at least 55% in domestic greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.

Svenja Schulze, meeting Chair and the German Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, said:

“This historic step proves the strength of Europe’s ambition to become the first climate neutral continent. Sustainable economic growth and long-term global competitiveness, new jobs, better health and a cleaner environment for EU citizens, these are all benefits this move will bring.

“The fast progress we are making would not be possible without the sustained efforts of Vice-President Timmermans and the European Green Deal he is pioneering. Socialists and democrats have a strong vision for a sustainable future, a cleaner and greener Europe for citizens.”

PES environment ministers were meeting for the final time under the German presidency of the Council of the EU.  Portugal will take over the rotating presidency from January. Portuguese Minister for the Environment and Climate Action, João Pedro Matos Fernandes, addressed the meeting on the sustainability and environmental goals of the incoming presidency.

The meeting was attended by:

  • Svenja Schulze, Chair, Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, Germany
  • Elisa Ferreira, European Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms, European Commission
  • Lea Wermelin, Minister for the Environment, Denmark
  • João Pedro Matos Fernandes, Minister of Environment and Energy Transition, Portugal
  • Pedro Marques MEP, Vice-President of the S&D Group, PES Coordinator for the implementation of the Commission Work Programme, European Parliament
  • Jytte Guteland MEP, S&D coordinator, Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, European Parliament
  • Yonnec Polet, Deputy Secretary General, PES