EPP-CoR Members have today emphasised the need for direct funding and engagement of local and regional authorities and partners for a sustainable economic recovery and implementation of the Green Deal during the 1st Green Deal Going Local working group meeting held online. Four EPP-CoR members will be working in the working group.
Michael Murphy, Cathaoirleach of Tipperary County Council and Chair of the ECON Commission said “The Green Deal is the new recovery for Europe. It will show how cities and regions will create a sustainable recovery on the ground. The implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), sound economic coordination under the European Semester tool and the Green Deal are compatible and aligned and they must take heed and be shaped by the local and regional level.” He warned that entrepreneurship, job creation and tackling poverty form part of shaping the green and digital transition and that the working group should continue to encourage the implementation of #SDGs otherwise there is a risk that the EU will miss the 2030 targets.
Markku Markkula, representative of Espoo City Council said that creating local partnerships and European level collaboration is essential for the success of the Green Deal. “Almost all issues of sustainable development can be resolved through the actions of people, municipalities, companies and other communities.”
Hanna Zdanowska, Mayor of Łodź remarked that every local government should be able to directly use European Green Deal funds. “The most ambitious plan to combat climate change will fail if central policies are decisive for a small village or a big city. We need simple and direct tools to use Green Deal funds.”
From his end, the Mayor of Braga – Ricardo Rio said that listening and adopting the perspective of local and regional authorities is crucial for the success of the Green Deal. He added that the working group will discuss with different partners how they can increase the impact and implementation of new policies. Rio emphasised that green transport could play an important role to achieve the objectives of the Green Deal “We need to develop innovation labs in cities to advance urban innovation g example through green transport.” Furthermore, he stated that the cities and regions need to address SDGs and the Green Deal at the same time.
The working group is composed of 13 local and regional elected representatives, including 4 from the EPP-CoR Group. It wants to ensure that cities and regions can bring the European Green Deal and EU’s recovery plan off the ground with concrete projects and direct funding to local and regional authorities. A dedicated webpage and new “EU Green Deal” map is also live.