MEPs decided to choose the safe option and agree on one position ahead of talks with the Commission and member states but it meant downgrading its efficiency ambitions.
But they were able to preserve an all-important energy savings goal of 1.5% under Article 7 of the draft report and include the transport sector for the first time. EU climate chief Miguel Arias Cañete welcomed the result, pledging to help secure an “ambitious agreement” in talks with the member states.
German Socialist MEP Martina Werner said the outcome was “a big disappointment, as the Parliament has given up of its ambitious 40% target for the first time” but was hopeful that the result still shows that the institution is “serious about the energy transition”.
The result is a double-edged sword as it represents two milestones: the Parliament’s first shift to 35% and the EPP group’s first commitment to moving up from its previously rigid 30% position.