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A young European Green Deal: Our ideas for EU climate change action

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The European Green Deal seeks to reduce greenhouse emissions and engage citizens and all parts of society to participate in fighting climate change. The goal: Europe shall be the world's first climate-neutral continent. Indeed, the climate emergency has mobilised the EU to commit to a target of climate neutrality across all member states by 2050.

 

As part of this objective, MEPs voted on 7th October 2020 with a 392 majority to amend the EU’s climate target for 2030, supporting a 60% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by the end of the decade, up from 40% formerly.

 

Now it’s your turn: How can we resolve the climate emergency before it’s too late? What would a young European Green Deal look like?

 

  • If you built a young European Green Deal against climate change, what would you focus on?
  • How can the European Parliament encourage Member States to become climate neutral by 2050?
  • Could the EU impose sanctions on Member States who fail to work towards these new targets?
  • Can global enterprises be influenced by the EU to accept greater responsibility in the fight to climate neutrality by 2050?

 

Euroscola Session
Environment and climate change

The European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS) has selected some of its resources to provide young people like you with background information and insights linked to the topic above.

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130 IDEAS

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Dimitris
22 April 2021
More nuclear power as its a cleanner form of producing energy with the minimum environmental footprint.
Jkaub
16 April 2021
Hallo, I think we should ban plastic or use it more wisely. In the old times we didn't have plastic. How come we use it so much now.
Violeta
16 April 2021
Regarding the topic of climate change, there are many things that still have to improve.
For example, in order to solve the issue which is pollution with public transport, we must change cities so that public transport is the default instead of cars, because people will most likely change when a better alternative is shown to what they are used to.

With the pollution that is caused by the growing fashion industry, fast fashion has been the leading industry because of the price compared to other more sustainable brands. We must change the way we buy and instead of going for quantity and how cheap an item is, go for lasting attire that is a more sustainable option. Those who are able to afford sustainable brands must try to buy from them, and brands must try to change the way they get their energy and take into consideration their workers.
These brands should also be promoted by social media platforms so that more people can take action.

However, there are countries that don't care for climate change as they don't see it as a threat to their life, so leading countries should try to make them realize that if all countries don't work together against the grave issue that is climate change, nothing will happen in the end.
We need to make people realize that if they change, they will be in a better position than before. We as citizens must take action towards climate change, and take responsibility for the world we live in.
Weronika
15 April 2021
It is worth bearing in mind the changing environment and climate. I believe that to counter global warming, countries should use more renewable energy sources such as solar, wind and hydropower.
In addition, I believe it is important to reduce the amount of waste generated each year, in particular by developing and improving recycling. To the benefit of the green deal, perhaps we can increase the area of ​​protected natural areas. This can result in ecosystem reshuffling and reduction of CO2 emissions.
Eliana
15 March 2021
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Anselm Vereertbrugghen
12 March 2021
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Jul
06 March 2021
Regarding environmental issues, it is only through electrification and a change in the electricity mix that we can decarbonise our economy. To date, nuclear power is the only reliable and low carbon energy source, meaning it is the indispensable condition to contain temperature rise while maintaining our standard of developed economy. In addition to renewables, the EU must side with nuclear energy!
Pia Pia Raufeisen
05 March 2021
In Germany, we are spoiled. For example, we have a system in which used bottles are given back to the supermarket to be renewed/ recycled and used again. This is a good method to not throw all the plastic bottles away and to reduce plastic, which is also contributing to the miserable environmental situation.
But there are other things that need to be done. Public traffic should be improved to make people go to work by train and not by car. Therefore, traffic and the emissions would be reduced.
Further, the communication and will to make compromises should be improved in the EU. They seem to be so separated by their different beliefs and opinions that it would be hard to find a consensus. Therefore, I would recommend them, to think wisely and together about clear laws which everyone has to oblige. And if they hesitate, there need to sanctions. I believe, that a good, just and fair, but strict climate policy is the only way how we may overcome this crisis.
Another point which I wanted to write about is the improvement of renewable energies which is obligated for every state in the EU.
Sorry, for my kindergarten englisch, but best wishes from Germany!
andriana
04 March 2021
As young people, we would like to make a significant change in our environment. Therefore, a possible contribution to this would be the reduction of air pollution, by sponsoring various industries, such as car business to produce electric cars, which are "green", meaning they are environmentally friendly.
Judith
24 February 2021
In order to act against the global warming I believe that countries should use more/only renewable energies like solar power, wind power and hydropower.
Moreover I believe that it is important to reduce the number of waste produced each year, in particular by developing and improving recycling.
Bérénice
23 February 2021
Transports are ranked 2nd most polluting field at the moment. Though we live in a globalised world that enhances the use of planes and boats, the EU should promote local consumption and set goals of improving transports such as cars in an eco-friendly way, with the help of experts.
hanane
22 February 2021
the EU could impose sanctions on Member States who fail to work towards these new targets, because we all need to fight for a better environment! If we don't respect or fail to improve it, we should be sanctioned, it could motivate people to change their behaviors.
The focus should actually be on facilitating business with the right FRAM work to improve the environment, and also focus on building more sustainable in order to stop the import from countries over an ocean away. Producing more on EU territory. Fewer offices in the EU will improve innovation. We have a lot of good, bright minds here, but they often go to places where it's easier to start businesses because of the boom within the EU. The incentive to innovate should be great. With the aim of making it easier for people to find solutions to our crisis.
Of course, they can succeed. There are many examples of good incentives or rules around the world. Simple and effective. . In addition, citizens / residents could fight climate change by changing our lifestyle, for example by buying reusable products and not just disposable items.
GUIAS Apolline
20 February 2021
As young people, we are directly concerned by the fashion industry, which is one of the most polluting fields. The idea of a greener and more responsible consumption is developing around the world and it begins to have a real impact. However, big brands use this movement as a trend to improve more and more their profit. What about real regulations in the fashion industry ? Can we stop "green washing" which is not a solution for our planet. Trading, recycling and reusing need to be more developed. Thank you !
Maja
12 February 2021
To keep our environment clean, we can do following. Our authorities should put pressure on companies and organizations to reduce their waste by taking care of their promotional materials. It would mean reduced production of leaflets (considering most of them end up as waste) and more ads made of recycled materials. Maybe we need to search for alternatives in promotion, such as using QR codes.
Simon Meyer
12 February 2021
In favor of the green deal, perhaps can we increase the surface of ​​protected natural areas (or natural parks). This could reshuffle an ecosystem (protected species, etc.) and reduce CO2 (via photosynthesis of plants, etc.).
The only constraint is to don't impact the environment by humans (except perhaps the regulation of predators). This is easily conceivable (requires however a vast territory).
Rahela
11 February 2021
In the future, we would like to see more green spaces in the centers of big cities. Not only is the presence of green areas good for air quality, but also for residents who want to get away from buildings, asphalt, traffic and escape into the nature. Likewise, the destruction of the city's green areas should be banned and it should be determined exactly where in the city should be the areas meant for construction of buildings, and where for parks, forests and nature walks. Our proposal is for the authorities to repeatedly donate seedlings to citizens in order to encourage them to plant. We also believe that it would be desirable to educate citizens on how we can grow our own food (fruits, vegetables, spices) which would result in more greenery on private lands while afforestation actions should be organized to create more green areas in  public lands. It would also be useful to plant trees, hedges and ornamental plants near children's playgrounds so that children are surrounded by greenery early in their youth.
Ines Dukić
11 February 2021
Even though Green Deal’s main goal is to achieve environmental benefits, I see Green Deal not only as environmental but primary as an economic plan. It would be naive to rely on altruism and goodwill only; new measures must have economic benefits in addition to ecological ones. Therefore, I consider the circular economy as the economic model of the future. To be specific, I am particularly interested in renting as a way to improve quality of life. Today it is common to rent an apartment or a car, but we need to think beyond that. We could rent anything from clothes to electric devices. Numerous people can use the same product (reuse), and when the product is used up, they can return it to the producer who will use its components for new products (recycle). This model might be appealing to both costumers and producers since it represents a compromise of excessive buying and sustainable waste disposal. Since environmental issues are global and not just local concerns, this approach can give results only if the whole community adopts it. One company is not enough, one person is not enough.
How can government and EU help? Tax breaks for those who use this economic model and raised taxes for those who don’t may encourage switching to the circular economy, just as financial injections for a transition period. Furthermore, there should be educations and campaigns promoting it in order to acknowledge the benefits of this system.
Ayante Fernández
10 February 2021
In Spain, we have been producing a lot of energy by using renewable sources.. My idea is using the facilities where indutries have been closed to put renewable sources such as photovoltaic cells. Also, we can give unemployed people an oportunity, thanks to the implementation of companies that produce the components of those cells. I got this idea because in my region, there were two thermal power plants that have been closed down. And I saw that this could be an oportunity to use the facilities of those power plants to help the country, because even though we have lots of wind towers and we used to live thanks to the mine coals, we want the best to our region, our country and our planet.
Gimnazija Pula
10 February 2021
Since the change should always begin from our own community, to reduce the effects of global warming we can change some of our everyday habits and systems. What concerns us the most in Pula is that Kaštijun is the only place specified for the disposal of large waste. Due to wrong estimations and a decreasing budget, Kaštijun's work is based on losses. It is increasing the bills of citizens, that at the same time have no appropriate place for large waste disposal, so it is piling up at the shores of Valelunga, Portić, Zonka and other places around Pula. Modernization of the landfill's system is needed, and also a way to use the fuel and biowaste that is extracted by processing the waste. The money made from that investment should then be invested in promotion of the service. By doing that, we would reduce the emission of the harmful gasses that are currently sky high, which is of course favorable for the environment, the atmosphere and the health of the citizens. Furthermore, the investment into recycling could also solve the problem of heating in our homes, by the example of the waste incinerator in Wien. (Jakov Benčić, Lara Plastić, Mara Kirin, Carla Rosanda, Leonarda Jakovljević, Martina Pahljina i Sara Baračić)
3.C Gimnazija Pula
10 February 2021
„Guided by a saying of Mahatma Gandhi „ Be the change you want to see in the world“ we think that changes need to come from local commuinty. It's easy to detect problems, but offering solutions is hard and lacking in our society. We suggest to close the traffic in city center of Pula. We to encourage using public transport and bicycles. We appeal to city authorities to close the city center and build a big parking garage at the entrance of the city. By that we would reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The problem of coming to town would be solved with electrical buses that would constantly transport people. We want to point out the lack of bike paths in our city. That would be solved by closing city center. It's not ideal solution but every change even a smallest one is a step forward.“

Alaia
09 February 2021
Although we are all aware of the negative effects our actions have on the environment, we don't seem to be willing to change our lifestyles in order to slow down climate change.
In my view, not enough importance is given to the environment and the damage we are doing to it. I live in an area whose main economic activity until the 1990s was mining. When this whole industry closed down, nobody cared about all the rubble and waste that was left at the gates of the mines. Today, our region is surrounded by huge mountains of rubble and the water in our rivers still has a blackish tinge because of the coal.
On the other hand, we are starting to promote the use of renewable energies. Our mountains are being filled with windmills and all those thermal power stations are starting to be dismantled, thus avoiding a great deal of harmful gases for our atmosphere and, consequently, for the environment.
Yet this is not enough. Many members of the European Union, and of the world, should follow the example of countries such as Norway, Sweden and Germany, promoters of responsible development.
The European Union could promote a series of laws or decrees that force its members to change their lifestyles to a more efficient and responsible one. This is a very difficult task and some countries may not comply, in which case, legal methods and sanctions should be used to express the need for this change. We are in a situation of extreme urgency and with the global pandemic we have been involved in for almost a year now, everything to do with the environment has been put on the back burner. We could gradually become more sustainable and environmentally conscious countries.
Lucía Cordón Losada
09 February 2021
The COVID-19 has been bothering us for almost one year.
Our lives have been interrupted in all aspects. Some global important problems, like global warming or the removal of garbage of the oceans have been forgotten for a while.
I am interested in how Europe is going to act to solve this enviroment questions.
V. Heemskerk
30 January 2021
Start focussing on memberstates like poland who are not doing anything to prevent climate change, instead of focussing on well-willing countries who do do a lot to prevent it. Focus on those where the biggest gain is possible.
V. Heemskerk
30 January 2021
Start focussing on nuclear energy instead of solar and wind. Combine everything, but focus in nuclear.

Do not force memberstates to be climate neutral in 2050. Move this to 2070 or 2100 to give memberstates more time to adjust and adjust more efficient, without putting monney in the wrong energy sources.

Felix H.
27 January 2021
Climate change is increasingly affecting our planet. Nevertheless, many people seem to pay no attention to it. To change this, I think we should start by buying products that contain less plastic and above all think about recycling them. To continue, I think we should organize environnemental days in school to raise awareness among students as much as possible. Furthermore, we know that climate change is linked to pollution which is generally caused by smoke and gases produced by factories, cars, businesses, non-renewable energy sources. One of the solution to this problem would be first use the car when it is really necessary or to promote public transport or carpooling in order to limit the number of cars. Secondly, promote the use of renewable energy sources in homes.