In a vote in the committee on regional development today, the Socialists & Democrats have managed to steer the future of the Just Transition Fund (JFT) on a green, socially equitable path. A series of core socialist issues have, therefore, been incorporated in the final version agreed in the committee: reinforcement of the social dimension, social infrastructure, energy poverty, explicit alignment of the Fund with the 2050 climate neutrality target and 2030 mid-term goals, and fair investments in companies provided they lead to the creation of jobs and a Green Reward Mechanism.
Pedro Marques, S&D negotiator for the Just transition Fund, stated:
“We have managed to introduce an 18% Green Reward Mechanism as a completely new tool. Thanks to this, for the first time ever in the EU, money is not allocated just according to the promises member states make, but according to their concrete achievements on greenhouse gas emissions reduction. This is a key element to ensure success for the JTF and the transition itself.
“We are moving towards our ideal: a Green Deal with a red heart. The scope of the JTF has a substantial focus on social infrastructure, social services of general interest, tackling energy poverty and a focus on social housing.”
Constanze Krehl, S&D spokesperson on regional policy, added:
“The Just Transition Fund is not only linked to the target of climate neutrality by 2050 at the latest but, thanks to the S&Ds, also to the intermediate target of 2030 to ensure that from the beginning we are on the right path forward.
“This Fund is the first key element of the European Green Deal. Its purpose is not to finance the climate or energy transition per se, but to give financial support to the socio-economic consequences of this transition.”
Rovana Plumb, S&D vice-president responsible for regional policy, said:
“Challenging times call for unprecedented measures. We welcome the Commission’s proposal to raise the level of financial support for the Just Transition Fund as it is an acknowledgement of its importance as a tool to reshape the EU in a greener and more social way.
“The Just Transition Fund means that nobody is left behind. The Green Deal represents a social transition, and it has to be done in a fair and just way.”