Poland and Hungary must live up to EU’s greatest challenges: Unlock the budget and recovery and go for higher climate ambition

Climate action| Financing the transition

At a European summit dedicated to enhancing the EU’s response to the COVID outbreak, prime ministers of Poland and Hungary reiterated their opposition to the EU budget and recovery funds on the issue of the rule of law, while a quick endorsement of the financial stimuli is needed to allow all EU countries to both relaunch their economies and finance a just and clean energy transition in line with a higher 2030 emission reduction target, a decision that is due to be made at the December European Council latest.

Wendel Trio, Director of Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe said: “The EU budget and recovery fund will give all Member States, particularly in Central and Eastern Europe, unprecedented means to accelerate the just and clean energy transition. Poland and Hungary cannot block this unprecedented financial support for climate action on the one hand, and say that they lack cash to achieve higher 2030 climate goals on the other hand.

The interests of Polish and Hungarian citizens are best served by action that ensures greater independence from fossil fuel imports, increases economic welfare through global leadership on the economic transition, and economic recovery measures that support building a better, more caring and more inclusive society.”

Trio added: “Time is of the essence, there’s both a budget and climate emergency. A swift agreement on both the EU budget and recovery and the EU 2030 climate target is a must to address the economic and the climate crises hand-in-hand. All eyes on the European Council of December, where we expect an agreement on these two major files to give Europe a chance to build back better and lead by example internationally.”

In parallel, the United Nations’ secretary-general Antonio Guterres called upon the EU to commit to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 in its new Nationally Determined Contribution.

In the Paris Agreement, all countries must submit new, substantially increased emission reduction targets for 2030 by the end of this year.


Nicolas Derobert, Head of communications, nicolas@caneurope.org, +32 483 62 18 88

Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe is Europe’s leading NGO coalition fighting dangerous climate change. With over 170 member organisations active in 38 European countries, representing over 1.500 NGOs and more than 47million citizens, CAN Europe promotes sustainable climate, energy and development policies throughout Europe.


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