Lisbon goals unattainable without revised energy policy, say MEPs

The European Parliament says that improving energy efficiency must be at the centre of efforts to fulfil Europe’s Lisbon objectives of becoming the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world.

MEPs said, in a resolution adopted on 14 February, that the EU must adapt its Lisbon Strategy to the current context of limited world resources and a fragile ecological system. 

“The EU should strive to become the most resource- and energy-efficient economic area in the world,” states the resolution, adding that “the Lisbon Strategy can be a success only if further efforts are made to establish a common energy policy”. 

This, say MEPs, will increase the EU’s competitiveness by providing more competition and benefits for consumers and securing cheap and sufficient supplies for European industry. 

The resolution adds that becoming a leader in energy-efficient technologies and renewable energies will provide Europe with “huge economic potential” on the world market while contributing to the fight against global warming. 

Nevertheless, MEPs also said that in order to guarantee the external competitiveness of European industries, which currently face burdensome EU laws to cut pollution, they are ready “to consider appropriate trade measures against ‘free rider’ countries, which do not shoulder their fair share of the burden of combating global climate change”. 

The text will be presented to EU heads of state and government at their annual spring meeting on 8-9 March 2007. 

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