EU must step up action for climate-just development

Brussels. With the opening of the European Development Days (EDD) in Brussels today, European development and environmental groups are urging the EU to take more ambitious actions in the fight against climate change.

ACT Alliance, CARE, CAN Europe, CIDSE, Oxfam, World Future Council and WWF have joined forces to host a thematic booth at the EDDs with the message: “1.5°C – Zero poverty, Zero emissions”. A human-sized walking Eiffel Tower will be present to remind the EU of its responsibility to pursue policies and actions at home and abroad that are consistent with the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C.

“Keeping within the 1.5°C global warming limit is a matter of survival for many vulnerable countries. Science tells us that beyond that level, irreversible impacts will reach more dangerous levels, leading to higher sea-level rise, reduced crop yields and more heatwaves. The poorest people, often marginalised women and girls, will be hit hardest, a grave injustice.”

Sven Harmeling, Climate Change Advocacy Coordinator, CARE International

“The window of opportunity to keep global warming below 1.5°C is rapidly closing. Just a few more years to prevent irreversible loss and damage which will annihilate the progress made so far. The Sustainable Development Goals will only be achieved if the richest countries and the development sector integrate this temperature limit in their policies and practices today.”

Bruno Nicostrate, Climate Change Advocacy Officer, ACT Alliance EU

“If the EU is truly committed to solidarity on climate change with its partners in developing countries, it must scale up climate action at home. This should result in higher targets for emissions reduction, renewable energy and energy efficiency.”

Maeve McLynn, Finance and Subsidies Policy Coordinator, CAN Europe

“If we as a global society are going to keep the temperature rise below 1.5°C, we must increase efforts to make renewable energy systems affordable and accessible, both here in the North and in the Global South. Policymakers need to follow the example of citizens who are already making this radical shift and support grassroots initiatives that are innovative and democratic.”

Giulia Bondi, Climate Justice & Energy Officer, CIDSE

“Less developed countries urgently need financial support to help them adapt to ever-more extreme weather and develop on a low carbon footing. The EU and its member states must put their money where their mouth is and increase the budget for global climate action.”

Marc Olivier-Herman, Oxfam’s EU Economic Justice Policy Lead

“Sustainable development can only be reached by transitioning to 100% Renewable Energy. The most climate vulnerable countries are in fact pioneering the energy transition as a way to implement zero poverty and zero emissions. A new report by the World Future Council and Bread for the World shows how 100% RE helps achieving all SDGs.”

Anna Leidreiter, Senior Programme Manager Climate Energy, World Future Council

“The EU talks a good game on climate action, but can it follow through? The fate of millions of people hinges on the Paris Agreement and 2030 Agenda being urgently translated from words into deeds. This is the only way we can be sure to improve the wellbeing and prosperity of everyone, everywhere.”

Sally Nicholson, Head of Development Policy and Finance, WWF European Policy Office

Photos for media use