EU climate vote on the brink – take action now!

» By | Published 05 Jul 2011

By Andy Hix, Push Europe

Today Ministers in Brussels will vote on whether to review the EU’s target of reducing its carbon emission by 20% by 2020. In the lead up to this decision, young people across Europe have been calling for a target of at least 30% as a first step towards a cleaner, fairer future.

I was part of a team of three young people that met with youth organisations in ten European countries as part of the Push Europe campaign, which brings together theUK Youth Climate Coalition, Young Friends of the Earth Europe and Bund Jugend,. We collected 300 ‘CVs’ from young people who want to work in a low carbon economy and filmed them talking about their visions for such an economy and which we presented to the Danish and UK Ministers for Energy and Climate Change.

Youth, national and international organisations such as Europe, 10:10, and Peace Child, also co-signed a letter to urge Ministers at last week’s EU Environment Council to reopen discussions on the EU’s emission target ahead of a final decision in October.  Photos of a youth led action in Bonn of young people lining up in front of an EU job desk holding CVs, accompanied the letter.

A similar letter to the one sent to Ministers has been sent to key MEPs who are currently unsupportive of a higher emissions target to encourage them not to block Europe’s future by voting against any raising of the target. Though not legally binding, a vote by the Parliament for a strengthened target would be hugely symbolic.

The letter follows a similar letter from 72 European businesses outlining the economic benefits of a higher target including the creation of at least 6 million jobs that could be created if the EU moves to the stronger 30% emissions target.

Today we are getting behind Christian Aid’s E-Action again asking people to email their MEPs about supporting the increased target in tomorrow’s vote. We hope that MEPs will take this important step towards the creation of the cleaner, fairer future that the youth of Europe desire.