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COP22: EU must respect indigenous rights and abolish subsidies to the fossil fuel industry

05/10/2016

“Why on earth are we wasting so much money on fossil fuel subsidies - an energy source of the past generation - or on payment of compensation to energy intensive industries under the Emissions Trading System (ETS)?

COP22: EU must respect indigenous rights and abolish subsidies to the fossil fuel industry

The European Parliament is debating this evening its position on the upcoming climate change conference taking place between 7 and 18 November in Marrakesh. The EU will be represented in the negotiations of the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP22) by the EU Presidency and the Commission.

Commenting on the resolution to be tabled, GUE/NGL MEP Estefanía Torres Martinez noted the positive proposals presented but said the EU leadership must not forget the indigenous peoples paying the highest price for a climate change they have no responsibility over:

“We welcome the proposals in the resolution that favour climate justice and are sensitive to the needs of Least Developing Countries, who are especially vulnerable to climate change, such as the sustainable introduction of technology adapted to their realities. The proposals presented take a clear stand against land grabbing and highlight the need for urgent action on climate refugees.”

The Spanish MEP criticised, however, the EU subsidies to the fossil fuel industry:

“There is still a lot to be done to stop climate change: greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced so that we meet targets, fossil fuel subsidies must be phased out and the indigenous rights of developing nations affected by this catastrophe must be respected. “

“I believe it is essential that the Commission and member states act to end the impunity of transnational corporations involved in human rights violations,” the MEP added. 

Echoing the criticisms, Finnish MEP Merja Kyllönen called for more efficient financing by the EU:

“Why on earth are we wasting so much money on fossil fuel subsidies - an energy source of the past generation - or on payment of compensation to energy intensive industries under the Emissions Trading System (ETS)?”

“With these wasted billions we could have pursued better solutions to improve energy efficiency and to enhance research and promote the use of renewable energy. We must make sure that every single euro in subsidies and public funding is allocated to tackle climate change, whether under ETS compensations, common agriculture policy or EU co-funded energy and transportation projects,” Kyllönen concluded.

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