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Fossil fuel projects continuously both politically and financially supported by EU pose threat to climate goals

19-10-2017

Fossil fuel projects continuously both politically and financially supported by EU pose threat to climate goals

 

October 18, 2017

  

While the European Commission and European Member States are finalising the 3rd European Union list of Projects of Common Interest (PCI list) [1], Justice and Environment has co-signed a letter together with numerous other NGOs all over the globe to draw European Commission’s attention to the fact that the support of gas projects impedes reaching climate goals. The support of gas projects, especially gas infrastructures, has to be ended and the number of gas projects on the PCI list needs to be reduced considerably.

 

The letter states:

the EU should stop promoting and support financially the construction of new fossil fuel infrastructure. The scientific community is absolutely clear about the fact that fossil fuels, gas included, are not compatible with a sustainable future./………/ Regular peer-reviewed studies show that these emission figures could be even greater [2] and that official inventories largely underestimate real volumes of emissions [3] of methane – a potent greenhouse gas which acts to warm the planet in addition to the carbon emissions from burning gas. In the current absence of a proven, mature and sustainable CCS technology to limit these emissions [4], gas cannot be considered as a solution to contribute to the fight against climate change.

It also says: 

The current level of resilience, diversification and density of the European gas grid [5], as well as the climate impact of gas, cannot justify that the next PCI list contains so many gas projects. Its number should be brought to zero.”

 

For the PCI list to serve as a list of common interest, it has to stop supporting fossil fuel projects.

 

The letter will be soon followed by comprehensive recommendations composed by Justice and Environment to the European Commission concerning the evaluation of TEN-E regulation which sets basis on the selection process of Projects of Common Interest. 

 

 [1] All the projects put in this list acquire the biggest political support they can have at the European level and also become eligible to receive money from a European multi-billion financial instrument (a.k.a public subsidies).

[2] http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acs.est.6b05531

[3] http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v538/n7623/full/nature19797.html

[4] Even the gas industry doubts the technology will ever reach maturity: https://consultations.entsoe.eu/system-development/joint-electricity-and-gas-consultation-build-the-e/user_uploads/160509_energy-scenarios-2040.pdf

[5] http://www.energyunionchoices.eu/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/EUC_Report_Web.pdf

 

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