The Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament today welcomed the European Commission’s proposal towards a more sustainable Europe.
S&D Group leader Udo Bullmann stated:
“Thousands of people in France and Belgium took to the streets over the week-end, calling on governments to act against climate change. There is a broad awareness of the urgency to act now among our citizens, particularly among the young.
“The Commission’s paper is timely. It shows that there are progressive forces at work in the European Commission that understand the challenge at hand.
“Putting Europe on a path of sustainable development is a task that is as urgent as it is complex. Under the lead of First Vice-President Timmermans, the Commission seems able to deal with this complexity. To respond to this urgency, we need determination to take the necessary steps forward.
"For us, it is clear that only the first of the scenarios proposed by the Commission allows Europe to rise to the challenge. Sustainable development spans across the social, economic, and environmental policies. The only way to manage the interplay between these different dimensions is to make the United Nations Sustainable Development goals the basis of policy-making across the board as the first scenario developed in the Commission paper suggests.”
S&D Group spokesperson on sustainable development Kathleen van Brempt added:
“As socialist and democrats, we can only embrace the initiative of the Commission. In recent years, we have been working on a strategy for a smarter, more sustainable Europe, leaving a less polluted world for our children while tackling all forms of inequalities. There is no time to waste.
“The implementation of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) are our guiding principles for the future. The S&D Group has launched a report - our Independent Commission for Sustainable Equality - which sets out more than one hundred proposals for a radical policy change (see here).
“There is only one scenario which is ambitious enough. We can’t support scenarios based on soft law or on a EU2020 type approach.”