"I think we have to clarify that being carbon neutral is a huge opportunity, a big vision for Europe, and in Europe, we need visions. 2050 is some time [away] and we can prepare it properly. I am very impressed by the analysis of the European Commission that in fact, we can even create additional jobs and growth.
There are challenges for some regions and some companies, but overall it’s also a business opportunity.
What I see as a problem is not only the member states but also in the Parliament that when it comes to an overall target, moving from 40% to 55% [by 2030], many member states, many colleagues in the Parliament are ready to do it, but when it comes to concrete action, they are less ready to do it.
I’m very frustrated that in the Parliament, we voted for 55% target but at the same time voted against an emissions trading system or another market-based measure for the transport sector. We can only achieve ambitious targets if we also use markets and we need to go for this if not in the revolution last week, we need to do it at another opportunity.
And also when it comes to member states, already when we did the 40% target negotiations - how much member states should deliver - there was, for example, Ireland telling us “we cannot do anything, our emissions are from agriculture, from cows and we want to grow in this area.” So someone has to present a strategy on how we can anyhow do it - just to speak about targets and not the ways to deliver these targets will not help."