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The Brief – Europe’s ‘Make the Planet Great Again’ pledge gets first acid test

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Next week, the EU gets another crack at showing that its promises to take care of the environment and honour the Paris Agreement are more than just empty words. But will the people in charge hit their marks or fluff their lines?

When Donald Trump said he was going to pull America out of the Paris accord, because it is a “bad deal” for the US, that was the moment Europe announced it would leap into the climate action leadership hot-seat.

There have been a lot of words in the six months since, with the EU agreeing with Canada and China that they would not let the US renegotiate the agreement.

But now we are into the actions, not rhetoric, phase and the end of 2017 was gloomy at best for those in the environmental camp.

During his flagship state of the union address in September, Commission boss Jean-Claude Juncker only mentioned the climate anecdotally. Member states completely disappointed during marathon talks at the end of December too.

Next week, MEPs meet in Strasbourg to sign off on a number of clean energy proposals, including energy efficiency, governance and renewables. Now is a real defining moment that will really tell us whether the EU will make good on all its energy promises.


© Euractiv