Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-03-26-Speech-3-019"

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"Mr President, in welcoming the conclusions of the Council, I wish to focus my remarks on the section entitled ‘Climate change and energy’. Many have identified these issues as the most important that we face in the world today, and it is good that the EU is taking the lead over climate change. However, we have something of a track record in adopting very ambitious targets which have so far proved difficult to achieve. So I welcome the note of caution that I detect in some parts of the text. I support calls for the transition to a low-carbon economy to be made in a way that is consistent with the EU’s sustainable development, competitiveness, security of supply, and sound and sustainable public finance, especially when coupled with a recognition of the risks of carbon leakage or the offshoring of European jobs and linked with the call for flexibility in achieving national renewable targets. I am of the view that we have placed too much emphasis on renewable energy sources as an objective rather than as a means to an end, because I am absolutely certain that renewables are not the sole solution. It seems to me that we should rather think of our real objective, which I take to be at least a 60% reduction in CO emissions by 2050, and then look to a range of options for achieving it. We have already recognised – through the principle of burden-sharing – that different Member States have very different energy situations, so why not restrict ourselves to setting that goal and allowing Member States to decide for themselves how to reach it? In that context, may I give credit to the UK Government – not something I do easily – for its announcements on the prospects for nuclear energy."@en1

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