Eight Nobel Peace Laureates have written to EU Heads of State and Environment Ministers encouraging them to continue to show climate leadership by ensuring passage of a key piece of European policy designed to reduce greenhouse gas pollution from transportation.
The letter can be found attached. It has been sent addressed personally to each Head of State in the European Union.
Following over two years of aggressive lobbying from the Canadian government and industry, experts will vote on February 23rd on the implementation of Article 7a of the Fuel Quality Directive. This policy would achieve emissions reductions by encouraging the use of lower carbon fuels and encouraging fuel producers to adopt more efficient production processes. The Canadian Government, instead of dealing with the emissions from the tar sands (Canada’s fastest growing source of GHG pollution), launched a PR assault against Europe’s efforts to clean up its fuel mix.
The February 23rd vote has three potential outcomes – either a qualified majority for or against the current implementation proposal, or neither. In the case of no qualified majority either way, the likely outcome is the discussion will be moved from technical expert committees to the political Ministerial level.
In support of this letter and in anticipation of the February 23rd vote, Hannah McKinnon, Campaign Director of Climate Action Network Canada, has said the following:
“The European Union has led by example when it comes to industrialized countries taking action on climate change. The EU has joined a global coalition of the willing when it comes to dealing with climate change, leaving space for laggards like Canada to catch up later. The European Union’s Fuel Quality Directive is a critical piece of policy designed to move away from the dirtiest fuels and encourage use of cleaner energy. The desperate efforts of the Canadian Government, along with the Albertan Government and industry, to kill this policy are a sad indication of how far the Harper Government is prepared to go to peddle some of the world’s dirtiest oil. The world is at a crossroads – we can either scrape the bottom of the barrel for tar sands and other highly polluting fuels, or we can embrace an ambitious transition towards safe, clean and renewable energies. These Nobel Peace Laureates recognize the urgency and the moral imperative for action on climate change, and it is inspiring to see them lending their support to European leaders and decision makers as they try to make the right choices for our collective future and shared climate.”
For further comment:
Hannah McKinnon, Campaign Director, Climate Action Network Canada