Europe Going Wobbly on Carbon Emission Goals?

| Mon Jan. 13, 2014 3:16 PM EST

Speaking of carbon emissions, the Financial Times reports that high energy prices are "undermining support" in Europe for rules that mandate increased use of renewable energy sources:

European commissioners are considering scrapping the targets for 2030 in a move that would please big utility companies but infuriate environmental groups....A proposed compromise, at the heart of discussions over the 2030 package, envisages that a renewables target, of up to 27 per cent, would be non-binding.

....This compromise for 2030, if accepted in the face of German opposition, would represent a significant change from the EU’s 2020 targets, which included binding goals that EU states should cut overall greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent from 1990 levels and derive 20 per cent of their power from renewables.

A long, grinding economic downturn cuts energy usage in the short run, but reduces tolerance for higher energy prices in the long run. That's what we're seeing happen here.

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