We have to give our European friends points for ambition:
Discussions regarding Europe's future energy policy this week has seen MEPs backing proposals for new EU targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 80% before 2050.
And, the meetings of the full EU Parliament in Strasbourg saw support for a 60% renewable energy target.
We think MEP stands for Member of European Parliament. In any event, the MEPs have some firm ideas how to reach these targets:
This week's discussions by MEPs also included nuclear energy, with MEPs calling on the Commission to draw up a specific "road map" for nuclear investments, while rejecting calls for a "phase out plan" for nuclear power in Europe.
Well, okay. The Europeans are getting ready for the climate change conference happening in Copenhagen later this year to bang out a new framework to replace the Kyoto protocol. Impossible to know whether the targets will be as ambitious as the Europeans are now discussing – though they have some idea, as interim conferences in Bali and Poland provided some direction – but they’re not waiting to find out.
And from the same article:
[Slovenian MEP Jordan] Cizelj said of Europe's energy mix: "It has to attain a larger portion of energy sources that do not emit greenhouse gases, such as renewable energy sources and nuclear energy. Besides, we cannot stop using coal, but we have to ensure the use of the best possible technologies that assure carbon capture and storage."
For those of you who think coal is going anywhere anytime soon.
Karl-Heinz Florenz, the German MEP (isn’t the planet the Great Gazoo came from) who presented the EU climate report. We’re sure it’s not remotely true, but every picture we see of an European politician seems to look like Herr Florenz – intelligent, well fed, a little jowly.