National Recovery Plans must work towards aims of Green Deal
Today, the European Parliament is voting on the European Parliament’s Scrutiny on the ongoing assessment by the Commission and the Council of the national recovery and resilience plans, as requested by the Greens/EFA Group. The recovery plans are part of the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) for recovery following the Coronavirus pandemic. Last week, MEPs from the Greens/EFA Group sent a letter to the Commission highlighting with elements of the national plans submitted so far, around commitments to climate-related spending and potential greenwashing.
Damian Boeselager, Volt MEP and Greens/EFA shadow rapporteur the RRF, comments:
"We have a solid Parliamentary majority calling on the Commission to do its job: Ensure that all the countries of the EU spend European money towards a green and digital transition, and not on national pet projects.
"Most of the submitted plans have shortcomings, be it greenwashing, lack of ambitious reform, or investments projects harming our environment. President Von der Leyen can make it right, if she addresses these rotten tomatoes. But she will need to stand up to national governments and defend our European goals.
"Making the Recovery Fund a success and keeping dirty investments out is a question of principle: If we get it right, it can be a blueprint for a future European fiscal policy, enabling a more resilient, sustainable and fair economy for all of us."
Ernest Urtasun MEP, Greens/EFA shadow rapporteur the RRF, comments:
"It's welcome that the Commission will start approving the first national plans next week so we can move forward with the recovery process. This is well ahead of schedule and a rapid allocation of the funds will be crucial for the recovery of our economies.
"However, we expect more from than the Commission than just a box ticking exercise. There is clear evidence, which we have already highlighted to the Commission that some plans are insufficient regarding the 37% climate target. We also have concern about compliance with the European Pillar of Social rights, gender equality, the do no significantly harm principle and the participation of regional and local authorities.
"The RRF is a tool not only for recovery but for a change towards the economy of the future. That's why all the projects included in the plans must comply with the eligibility criteria of the RRF regulation. Recovery funds should be used to make the Green Deal a reality."