Climate Weekly: Europe’s struggle to walk the talk

(Climate Change News, 22 Feb 2019) Brussels is good at talking the big talk on climate change, but cementing its rhetoric is often a tougher slog.

Case in point this week: the EU once again made ambitious promises and called on others to follow its lead – first in a meeting between foreign ministers, then in response to the green movement’s newest poster child, Greta Thunberg.

But when it comes to translating those promises into, say, trade agreements, the change can be harder to spot… at least in the face of American threats of tariffs.

A European Parliament committee endorsed opening talks for two trade agreements with the US, contrary to the bloc’s pledges to only strike deals with countries committed to the Paris Agreement, Natalie Sauer reports. New agreements with Mexico and Japan do refer to the climate accord.

Nonetheless, commission president Jean-Claude Juncker criticised Donald Trump for suggesting climate change isn’t real when speaking alongside Swedish teenager Thunberg on Thursday.

The EU will put money behind its promises, Juncker added: “From 2021 to 2027, every fourth euro spent within the EU budget will go towards action to mitigate climate change,” Reuters reported.

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Climate Change News, 22 Feb 2019: Climate Weekly: Europe’s struggle to walk the talk