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N-VA: “The European Parliament is getting ahead of itself with the Climate Pact”
The votes on the package of climate laws called “Fit For 55” turned out to be a fiasco today. The reform of the Emissions Trading Scheme did not win a majority, and the rapporteurs withdrew other related dossiers. “Just as we had predicted,” says MEP Johan Van Overtveldt. “The EU wants to be at the forefront of climate ambitions, but is hopelessly getting ahead of itself on the facts.”
Everyone is convinced of the need for a sustainable transition for the European Union. But that transition must be more than just sustainable; it must also provide the necessary security, safeguard jobs and be affordable,” says Johan Van Overtveldt, who is following the dossier for the N-VA delegation.
“We are in a situation of war, geopolitical unrest, with an energy crisis and a worryingly highrate. Against this particularly unstable background, the Commission wants to achieve great ambitions. These plans cost a lot of money, and have an impact on citizens and businesses. An impact that, incidentally, is hardly mapped out. Are we going to increase the burden on citizens and businesses even more just now?”
The N-VA delegation has repeatedly pointed out the lack of a thorough impact analysis, and notes that there still is none. With every measure, the EU should ask itself whether it is feasible and affordable for everyone. The climate fund is still an uncertain factor. “There are plenty of other funds available to use here. By the way, Flanders would be a net contributor to that climate fund,” Johan Van Overtveldt states. Our MEPs are also concerned about the plans for the Emissions Trading Scheme, which will have a devastating impact on electricity prices for citizens.
The N-VA does support the principle of “Carbon without borders”. The EU wants the same to be paid for imported products for their carbon emissions as for domestic products. “But the EU is acting too recklessly on this. This is still relatively uncharted territory, and there is a risk of a serious competitive disadvantage for our exporting companies compared to companies that do not have to pay for emissions in their own country.”
Johan Van Overtveldt is of the opinion that the requested reduction of emissions from -35% to -47% for Belgium is not feasible. “We are arguing resolutely for a better and fairer distribution between the Member States.
“The European Commission’s ambitions are sky-high in several areas, and the European Parliament often tends to go one step further. I want to warn about feasibility and affordability, and for jobs that may be compromised. The resources available are not endless; difficult choices are inevitable. And it would show political courage to say so honestly,” Johan Van Overtveldt concludes.