EU funds still used to subsidise fossil fuels in Eastern member states
(EurActiv, 29 Jan 2016) The countries of Eastern and Central Europe rarely use their EU funding for energy transition projects, instead using the money to entrench their dependence on fossil fuels. Our partner Journal de l'Environnement reports.
According to a report published by Friends of the Earth Europe on Tuesday (26 January), only 7% of the €178 billion allocated to nine countries in Eastern and Central Europe is spent on renewable energy, energy efficiency improvements or "smart grids".
The report covers allocations from both the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund for the period 2014-2020, in Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Croatia and the Czech Republic.
Though a requirement of the EU, “the integration of climate change considerations into all investment areas” is carried out “at a mainly rhetorical level”, according to Friends of the Earth Europe.
The Cohesion Fund, the European Social Fund and the ERDF are the main tools supporting infrastructure investments in Europe. Over the period 2014-20 these funds will distribute €351 billion among the 28 EU member states.