Merkel: “very hard work” ahead to achieve EU climate goals

German Chancellor Angela Merkel predicts that achieving the European Union’s targets for reducing global warming emissions will be “very hard work.”

MADRID – German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday predicted that achieving the European Union’s targets for reducing global warming emissions would be “very hard work.”

The so-called European Green Deal, agreed in December last year, provides a plan to reduce gas emissions by 55% during this decade and become carbon neutral in the 27-nation bloc by 2050.

“I will not be there anymore but will look closely at how far the compromise will go,” she told an audience in Cáceres, where she received the Carlos V European Award from King Felipe VI.

Merkel appealed for a change in how climate issues are handled.

Referring to deadly floods in Germany last July, she said “people talk too often about the cost of climate protection and too little about the cost of not protecting the climate.”

She also urged people to focus on “new market opportunities, new technologies, new employment opportunities” stemming from the energy transformation.

The Carlos V Prize honors people, organizations or projects that help to strengthen “Europe’s cultural and historical values”.

Previous winners are European feminist politician Simone Veil, former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

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