European Parliament takes leading role as Trump pulls out of Paris Agreement

The Effort Sharing Regulation sets emission reduction targets for Member States for the period 2021–2030 and the rules they must follow to meet them

15 June 2017, 1:31pm
Labour MEP Miriam Dalli
Labour MEP Miriam Dalli
The European Parliament sent a strong message in favour of concrete action against Climate Change as it agreed on a legislation to curb its greenhouse-gas emissions in the transport, building and agriculture sectors by almost a third by 2030.

A progressive coalition led by the Socialists and Democrats managed to stop the conservative forces in the European Parliament from further weakening the proposal of the European Commission to reduce emissions from these specific sectors.

The regulation, known as ‘Effort Sharing’, achieved the backing of the European Parliament with 534 votes in favour, 88 against and 56 abstentions. The regulation sets emission reduction targets for Member States for the period 2021–2030 and the rules they must follow to meet them. It includes the transport, buildings, agriculture and waste management sectors, together accounting for almost 60% of total EU emissions.

Labour MEP Miriam Dalli, S&D’s spokesperson on environment and S&D rapporteur on this legislation, described the vote as a major step forward, setting a longer-term objective up to 2050 to reduce emissions.

Labour MEP Miriam Dalli, S&D’s spokesperson on environment and S&D rapporteur on this legislation, described the vote as a major step forward, setting a longer-term objective up to 2050 to reduce emissions.


‘‘The pro-environment groups came together to make a positive difference. On the other hand, the EPP went out of their way to further weaken this proposal. We need to make sure that EU governments take serious measures to reduce emissions and live up to their commitments. Every sector needs to contribute to stop and eventually reverse the impacts of Climate Change and this legislation addresses precisely this,” Dalli said.

This will lead to more frequent compliance checks to make sure that Member States are actually reducing their emissions and not lagging behind.

The vote was taken following a debate in the plenary of the European Parliament about US President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement.

Dalli described Trump’s decision as a blow to common sense.

“This setback will not abate our resolve to act. We need to lead, inspire and empower. This is the time for bold action. The time where we decide as one united continetn on which side of history we want to be,” the Maltese MEP said.