The Young European Federalists (JEF-Europe) welcome the Commission’s proposal for common energy restrictions, presented on the 10th of January 2007. The climate challenge clearly demonstrates the importance of European and international federal structures and common global solutions. However, the common restrictions must only be a first step towards clear internal energy policies within the EU.
Safe energy supply, energy dependence and environmental threats due to energy consumption, are all examples of policy areas where it is impossible for each member state to act alone. The fight against climate change has to be dealt with on a global level.
“International problems need international solutions. We need to strengthen international institutions and support global regimes such as the Kyoto Protocol when looking for solutions to our common challenges. When states like the US and China turn their backs to climate issues, the importance of a strong common frontline of the EU is crucial for achieving any development in this crucial question”, stated Jan Seifert, the president of the Young European Federalists (JEF-Europe).
“The EU must take a lead in innovative energy policies. The Commissions proposition is a step in the right direction and a proof of the importance of working together in order to tackle common environmental threats. Now it is up to Europe‘s governments to back this proposal up with the commitment it deserves and show that Europe is more then a lame duck in the fight against climate change”, says Jan Seifert.
In contrast to the US and China, Europe has shown that we have a joint responsibility for the environment. The EU must be in the forefront towards a new era of sustainable energy – to break energy dependency and to promote the development of new solutions. Therefore it is crucial to set ambitious goals for a renewable mix of European energy sources. 20% renewables are not enough to save the climate.
Jan Seifert rejects the industry sector’s criticism to the proposition’s negative effects on the EU’s economy. “Taking the lead in innovation creates comparative advantages and stimulates growth. But this is also a chance to show that Europe is not only about money, but that Europe stands for important values such as the belief in a collective supranational responsibility. This is important, not only as an example in the world but also to regain the citizens’ trust”
JEF Press Release, 9th February 2007