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V4, Romania and Bulgaria join forces against EU environment goals

THE COUNTRIES of the Visegrad Group (i.e. Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland) will join forces with Romania and Bulgaria at the EU summit in October to push for projected EU environmental goals to be softened, representatives of the respective environment ministries agreed at a meeting in Bratislava on September 30.

THE COUNTRIES of the Visegrad Group (i.e. Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland) will join forces with Romania and Bulgaria at the EU summit in October to push for projected EU environmental goals to be softened, representatives of the respective environment ministries agreed at a meeting in Bratislava on September 30.

The environmental activists however warn that the countries go against reasonable policy of the EU, the TASR newswire reported.

A memo signed at the September 30 meeting states that the countries share views on environmental issues and climate change and are ready to defend the joint view at the EU level.

While the countries support the fight against climate change and efforts aimed at improving the situation involving waste and air pollution, economic realities should not be ignored, said Slovakia’s Environment Minister Peter Žiga.

“There is also a need to take into account the current economic situation in our countries so that excessively radical changes do not have negative effects,” he added, as quoted by TASR.

The EU’s environmental package proposes, for example, a 40-percent reduction in greenhouse gases, a 27-percent increase in the share of renewable resources used in energy production and a 25-percent rise in energy efficiency by 2030. The six countries think that only the goal involving greenhouse gas emissions should become binding.

“Other goals should be used more as benchmarks than be made obligatory,” Žiga said, as quoted by TASR.

Non-governmental organisation Greenpeace Slovensko however says that the attitude of the six countries go against reaching a reasonable climate and energy European policy, as reported by TASR. The economic interests of owners of the business cannot be above people, their healrh and environment, claimed Pavol Široký, coordinator of the climate and energy campaign of Greenpeace Slovensko.

Široký also stressed that only ambitious and binding objections for reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases, for increasing the share of renewable energy resources and energy savings should secure reasonable and sustainable climate and energy policy of the EU, TASR reported.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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