21 June 2011

Lobbying on climate change

Environment and Climate Change Minister Stewart Stevenson today pressed the case for an EU-wide carbon reduction target of 30 per cent.

The move would see each member state legally bound to implement efforts to reduce their carbon emissions. Scotland is one of several countries urging the EU to consider the move.

Mr Stevenson took part in a breakfast meeting with UK Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne and environment ministers from Denmark, Sweden, Slovenia and Spain who also want to see more ambition with regard to emission reductions within the EU.

Mr Stevenson said:

"The message I am taking to the EU is crystal clear: we need greater action on climate change in Europe, and it is vital the EU 2020 climate change target increases to 30 per cent.

"The evidence from Scotland strongly supports the economic case being made for such a change. Despite the lack of an international climate change agreement, major players such as China and India are pressing ahead with investment, and the European Union simply cannot afford to be left behind.

"Governments across the world are increasingly realising the opportunities presented by low carbon technologies - job, investment and trade prospects as well as energy security and environmental benefits. This means the global low carbon economy isn't just sensible, but is inevitable.

"The European Commission intends to put forward an Energy Roadmap for 2050 in the second part of 2011.Scotland is pursuing a programme of decarbonisation of power supplies - 27 per cent of electricity demand is now generated from renewables and aims to reach 100 per cent by 2020. Scotland is working at the forefront of the development of carbon capture and storage and grids.Scotland has set a target of a 12 per cent reduction in energy consumption, and 42 per cent for carbon reduction by 2020.

The EU is currently committed to a 20 per cent cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, which is being delivered by the EU 20/20/20 Climate and Energy Package (20 per cent emissions cuts / 20 per cent renewable energy / 20 per cent energy efficiency).

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