Towards an EU budget that will serve to achieve Europe’s climate objectives

Cities and civil society groups send open letter to EU Council



Joint letter

Publication date


Related legislative initiative

EU Budget

Open Letter to Ministers ahead of General Affairs Council of 16 October 2018 by 101 businesses, civil society, local authorities, think tanks and other organisations on the Multi-Annual Financial Framework

Towards an EU budget that will serve to achieve Europe’s climate objectives

To: Ministers of the General Affairs Council

Dear Minister,
The co-signatories of this letter represent a broad group of one hundred and one businesses, civil society organisations, local authorities, think tanks and other organisations who are working together to support the EU’s commitment to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement objectives. We are writing to urge you to ensure that the next MFF is aligned with Europe’s climate and energy objectives, and is consistent with and contributes to the Paris Climate Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals across all programmes.

The recently published IPCC 1.5°C report shows that we have the scientific understanding, the technological capacity and the money to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. The only barrier is one of political will, which you and your colleagues can change.

Therefore, we ask you to:

  • Increase the climate action target to at least 40% of the whole EU Budget, with specific ex-ante binding targets per programme.
  • Climate proof the entire EU budget, and exclude spending on projects that are not in line with the Paris Climate Agreement, such as unabated fossil fuels infrastructure and environmentally harmful subsidies. Extend the exclusion criteria on fossil fuels in the Cohesion Fund programme proposal to all fossil fuel investment and apply these across all programmes.
  • Include Energy Efficiency First as a mandatory assessment tool in all planning and preparation of programmes and projects, similar to the provisions in the Regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union.
  • Improve the performance and result orientation of climate action. Take into account the recommendations by the European Court of Auditors on the climate tracking methodology, differentiate between mitigation and adaptation measures, and avoid overestimation.
  • Align financial flows and fiscal incentives to a low carbon pathway as committed to under the Paris Climate Agreement. Align the National Energy and Climate Plans with financing strategies under the EU Budget, and incentivise climate action through higher budget allocation and better financial conditions.
  • Provide support for a just transition to a low carbon economy, in particular to support communities and workers in high-carbon regions highly depending on fossil fuels.

We look forward to engaging with you on this very important matter.


ACT Alliance
AE3R – Agentia pentru Eficienta Energetica si Energii Regenerabile Ploiesti-Prahova / Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Agency
Akcja Konin
Alofa Tuvalu
Amis de la Terre France / Friends of the Earth France
APES – Asociace poskytovatelů energetických služeb / Association of Energy Service Providers
AVERE – European Association for Electromobility
Budovy pre budúcnosť / Buildings for the Future
Carbon Market Watch
CEE Bankwatch
Centrum pro dopravu a energ
Climate Alliance
Climate Reality Project
CNCD 11.11.11
Czech Green Building Council
DENEFF – Deutsche Unternehmensinitiative Energieeffizienz e.V.
Deutsche Umwelthilfe / Environmental Action Germany
Divadlo Astorka Korzo ’90
DNR – Deutscher Naturschutzring
EHPA – European Heat Pump Assocation
Energy Cities
EPS – Sdružení EPS ČR / Czech EPS association
ETUC – European Trade Union Confederation
EU-ASE – European Alliance to Save Energy
EUREC – Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centres
EURIMA – European Insulation Manufacturers Association
Euro Perspectives Foundation
EuroACE – European Alliance of Companies for Energy Efficiency in Buildings
FEDARENE – European Federation of Agencies and Regions for Energy and the Environment
Focus, društvo za sonaraven razvoj / Focus – Association for Sustainable Development
Food and Water Europe
FÖS – Forum Ökologisch-Soziale Marktwirtschaft e.V.
Friends of the Earth Europe
Fundación Renovables
Fundacja Fundusz Partnerstwa – Partnership Fund
Fundacja Greenmind
Fundacja Instytut Rozwoju Innowacyjnej Energetyki
Fundacja Miasto Prowincjonalne
Fundacja Nasza Ziemia
Fundacja Otwarty Plan
Fundacja Rozwój Tak – Odkrywki Nie!
Fundacja Zielone Światło
Green Budget Europe
Green Building Council España
Green Building Council Italia
Hnutí Duha / Friends of the Earth Czech Republic
IEW – Fédération Inter-Environnement Wallonie
Irish Green Building Council
Islamic Relief Worldwide
Katedra Ecologie
Magyar Természetvédok Szövetsége / Friends of the Earth Hungary
MEHI – Hungarian Energy Efficiency Institute
Milieudefensie / Friends of the Earth Netherlands
Mouvement Ecologique
Municipality of Ciechanów
Municipality of Ostrów Wielkopolski
Národná platforma Dohovoru primátorov a starostov / Covenant of Mayors National Platform Slovakia
Ögni – Osterreichische Gesellschaft für Nachhaltige Immobilienwirtschaft
Ogólnopolskie Stowarzyszenie Budownictwa Naturalnego
Oil Change International
Państwomiasto Fundacja Projekt: Polska
Polska Zielona Sieć / Polish Green Network
Polski Klub Ekologiczny Okręg Mazowiecki / Polish Ecological Club Mazovian Branch
Polskie Stowarzyszenie Budownictwa Ekologicznego / Polish Green Building Council
Priatelia Zeme-CEPA
Push Sweden
RAC France / Climate Action Network France
REFEDD – Réseau Français des Etudiants pour le Développement Durable
ROENEF – The Association for Promoting Energy Efficiency in Buildings
Šance pro budovy / Chance for Buildings
SAPI – Slovenská asociácia fotovoltického priemyslu a OZE/ Slovak Association of Photovoltaic Industry and RES
Seas at Risk
Slovak Academy of Sciences – Institute of Forecasting
Society for Sustainable Living
Stowarzyszenie Ab Ovo
Stowarzyszenie BoMiasto
Stowarzyszenie do spraw Rozliczania Energii
Stowarzyszenie Eko Unia
Stowarzyszenie Zielony Imielin
Towarzystwa Przyjaciół Rzek Iny i Gowienicy
Towarzystwo dla Natury i Człowieka
Towarzystwo na rzecz Ziemi
Transport & Environment
Więcej niż Energia
Zaļā brīvība / Green Liberty Latvia
ZERO – Associação Sistema Terrestre Sustentável
Zero Waste Europe