Euro Debt Crisis Saps EU’s Ability to Lead Climate Debate
The EU’s debt crisis has sapped its ability to lead the way in ongoing global climate talks in Doha, and build on a fragile victory it clinched a year ago. The European Union is one of the few to have promised to sign up to a second emissions-cutting period under the Kyoto process, the only international pact on tackling climate change. But European Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard’s drive to keep Europe at the vanguard of the global effort has been sabotaged at home and abroad by the debt crisis, which has drained energy or inclination for anything else.
In Europe, some EU member states, the heavy industry lobby and those within the EU executive who echo its views have steadily chipped away at Hedegaard’s attempts to legislate against carbon, arguing they are unaffordable in cash-strapped times.