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ESC opinions on energy policy and climate change

At its plenary session of 29-30 October 1997, the Economic and Social Committee (ESC) adopted opinions relating to the Commission's communications on Community energy policy, the energy dimension of climate change, and the Community's position on climate change in view of the ...
At its plenary session of 29-30 October 1997, the Economic and Social Committee (ESC) adopted opinions relating to the Commission's communications on Community energy policy, the energy dimension of climate change, and the Community's position on climate change in view of the forthcoming Kyoto conference.

The Committee welcomed the Commission's communication entitled "Towards an overall view of Community energy policy", which aims to improve the transparency of actions in this area. Certain reserves were, nevertheless expressed. The Committee expressed its conviction that a coherent and coordinated common energy policy must be elaborated at Union level and be based on cooperation between national energy polices.

The ESC expressed strong support for the Commission's communication setting out the Community negotiating position for the forthcoming international climate change conference in Kyoto. In particular, the Committee praised the communication's demonstration that development compatible with ecological priorities is both realistic and achievable. The ESC, however, noted a political weakness in the position in that it does not provide for a unilateral commitment on the part of the European Union.

With regard to the Commission's communication on the energy dimension of climate change, the ESC further notes that climate policy is a policy with a global dimension and expresses its belief that the EU should proceed with negotiations with the United States and Japan prior to the Kyoto conference in order to optimize the chances of reaching a satisfactory outcome.

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