‘New economic model’ needed to deal with climate change, EU presidency says

(EurActiv, 1 Mar 2021) Europe’s current economic model “has no future” and does not respond to “major environmental challenges”, Portugal’s prime minister António Costa said on Friday, calling for the adoption of new models such as the circular economy and sustainable bioeconomy.

The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the need to “redesign” the economic development of the EU, which recently committed itself to becoming the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, said Costa who was addressing the opening session of a high-level conference ‘Climate Change – New Economic Models‘.

“The economic model that has led us to this point has no future and does not allow us to respond to the major environmental challenges: combating climate change, reducing pollution and reversing the loss of biodiversity,” said Costa, whose country currently holds the six-month rotating presidency of the EU.

According to Costa, the EU’s response to the impact of the pandemic must encompass not only support for economic and social recovery, but also the promotion of a “new development [that is] fairer and more equitable and within the limits of natural systems” that sustain life.

Frans Timmermans, the European Commission’s executive vice-president in charge of the Green Deal, called for a more circular economy to reduce emissions.

“Our pattern of extracting, using and disposing of resources has to change. We have to completely change the way products are designed, processed, manufactured and consumed,” Timmermans said at the conference.

“The market needs products that can be produced, used, reused, recycled and reused again. We must have products that are increasingly made from recyclable materials. This will help us grow, while at the same time reducing the pressure on our environment,” he added.

External link

EurActiv, 1 Mar 2021: ‘New economic model’ needed to deal with climate change, EU presidency says