More than one million people and 100 environmental NGOs across Europe are calling on the EU to restart its economy by launching the ‘biggest green investment plan the world has ever seen’.
This Friday, MEPS will decide what they want in the EU’s Recovery Fund and seven-year budget – so far, around 1.2 million people have joined campaigns at avaaz, WeMove Europe, and SumOfUs to call on them to use the much-awaited proposal to facilitate a sustainable reset.
They say this would involve the EU investing hundreds of billions into energy-efficient retrofits, renewable energy deployment, restoration of natural habitats, more public transport and greener farming practices to “put people’s wellbeing at the heart of the crisis response”, deliver a range of social benefits and protect workers’ rights.
The NGOs and petitioners warn against the bail-out of polluting industries such as gas, oil and coal, chemicals, cars and airlines and says any financial support they receive should be conditional upon reaching environmental requirements and objectives.
Wendel Trio, director of Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe, said: “The COVID-19 crisis teaches us that prevention is better than cure. Acting to prevent dangerous climate change is the best way to get Europe and the world out of this economic crisis in a way that protects citizens and economies from future disruptions.
“And an ambitious climate policy is a guarantee that the stimulus package will have the most value for its money. For the next EU budget that means no support to fossil fuels and spending plans that serve the transition to climate neutrality.”