NEWS

EC prod for green investments

European Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas has called on authorities and enterprises to invest in the «green economy,» noting that harnessing the country’s renewable energy source (RES) potential would not only boost the fight against climate change but also combat the economic crisis by creating a wealth of new jobs. The commissioner stressed that this shift toward the green economy «must be carried out quickly by our enterprises and industry,» adding that «whoever moves first will gain the advantage.» «Investments made in clean technologies, with the sustainable use of resources and energy-saving practices, are more cost efficient and productive, creating new jobs and giving European industry a very strong position in a competitive global market,» Dimas told Kathimerini in an interview published yesterday. Questioned about an EU drive to encourage member states to reduce the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions they produce by curbing the use of polluting fossil fuels in energy production and embracing RES sources, such as solar and wind energy, Dimas said he believed a United Nations emissions trading program would help. Greece was temporarily suspended from the program earlier this year after UN experts questioned the adequacy of its pollution measuring system. «This trading mechanism will oblige member states, including Greece, to develop their renewable energy sources,» the commissioner said. As regards the progress toward a green economy on a global level, Dimas said he has been encouraged by recent developments, including the election of Barack Obama as the new US president. «The recent comments by Obama regarding the introduction of an emissions trading system in the USA and goals for reducing greenhouse gases in the middle term and long term as well as the active participation of the USA in negotiations signal a change in policy and are very encouraging,» Dimas said.