Stockholm, July 2016 – Greenpeace condemns the Swedish government’s decision to allow state-owned Vattenfall to hand over its lignite mine assets in Germany to the Czech company EPH. The decision announced this morning risks catastrophic consequences for the climate.
Annika Jacobson, Program Manager for Greenpeace in Sweden, said: “This is a political collapse. The government and parliament have failed to stand up for the most crucial issue in our time. Prime Minister Stefan Löfven had the chance to make a historic contribution to the climate and to show true leadership. Today's decision will seriously hamper international climate work and implies a direct subversion of the Paris Agreement.
“The cost to society in terms of impact on the climate, environment and health risks may be immense. The costs will far exceed what Vattenfall possibly managed to save in the form of reduced loss for the company.”
The Czech company EPH stated previously that they hoped for a coal renaissance in Europe. The risk is great that EPH will open new lignite mines and thus emit 24 times Sweden's annual emissions. The world has turned their gaze towards Sweden recently and global leaders have urged the government to decommission coal power plants instead of selling them.
“The fight to leave the coal and the oil in the ground continues,” said Jacobson. “Despite today's announcement, we are pleased that more and more researchers, companies, organizations, politicians and individuals realize that the climate requires real action, not just a signature on a piece of paper. Those who do not go from words to action will loose their credibility in the future."
Source: Greenpeace Sweden
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