Climate neutrality must be achieved fairly: PM

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki defended his decision to veto the EU resolution on climate neutrality during the recent summit.

Poland, Czech Republic block EU policy on climate-neutral Europe by 2050

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Poland is not blocking the climate policy of the EU but “wants the transformation to be conducted fairly,” he told private RMF24 radio.

Mr Morawiecki said that the resolution was unfair in the way that it treated all the countries the same whereas their development and dependency on coal-based energy was different.

“We are not a highly-developed country like France with energy based on the atom, or a wealthy country like Germany, or the Scandinavian states that base their energy on hydropower plants,” he said. “It is a bit like the richest people in the world decided to raise train ticket prices by 500 percent because they only travelled by plane.”

He added that reduction of coal-based energy might lead to financial costs and Poland needs to prepare compensation schemes.

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Poland blocks EU climate resolution

During Thursday’s summit, the EU was set to adopt a document that would oblige member states to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.

Climatic neutrality is a situation in which net CO2 emission is zero, meaning that the same number of greenhouse gases are emitted as are absorbed. This can be achieved by, for example, reducing coal-based energy sources and planting more trees.

The plan was to be approved by the European Council, a group of leaders from the 28 EU countries, unanimously. However, Poland, the Czech Republic, and later Hungary and Estonia, opposed it. The vast majority of countries supported the goal. The EU member states that are the most reliant on coal are Poland, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Romania, and Germany.