(05 September 2014) – 25 Conservative, Socialist, Liberal, and Green Members of the European Parliament have written to Commission President-elect Jean-Claude Juncker voicing their opposition to the potential merging of the energy and climate change portfolios.
The energy and climate portfolios would come under one commissioner and is most likely going to UK’s Jonathan Hill, according to a draft document obtained by EurActiv. The two separate portfolios were previously the responsibility of Connie Hedegaard as climate action commissioner, and Günther Oettinger, in charge of energy in the outgoing Commission team.
The MEPs believe a joint portfolio will only weaken the role of the EU in future climate and energy negotiations at the international level that will culminate at the December 2015 UN climate conference in Paris.
Frédéric Thoma, energy policy adviser at Greenpeace EU, said it is important who gets the job. “A capable and proactive commissioner could help steer the EU towards a clean and sustainable energy system, as much as the wrong person could roll back energy and climate policy at least ten years,” he said.
The MEPs recognise “the links between the two portfolios are undeniable and continued close coordination between the two will be essential.” (With EurActiv)