Sustainability at the heart of EU agenda
Speaking at the opening session of the R20 Conference in Vienna, President Barroso emphasised that sustainability is deeply engrained in both the EU growth strategy (Europe2020), the proposed multiannual budget (MFF) and across all EU policies.
In his speech, President Barroso stressed the importance of involvement of all relevant actors, in particular both business and governments on all levels – regional, national and global – to ensure sustainable future for our planet. "R20 is a shining example of this new mind-set in business and in government, because it draws on so many stakeholders and their expertise," said the President.
He stressed, that there is a clear business case for "green investing" and that the terms "green" and "growth" are not in contradiction. It is possible to create smart sustainable growth and real jobs at the same time, as shown for example by the "Green Building Cluster" in Lower Austria which involves the regional government and more than 200 partners, as well as by many other projects supported by the EU across Europe.
The President also recalled the commitments of the EU in terms of sustainability fixed in the EU's growth strategy – Europe2020 (20% emission reductions , 20% share of renewable energy sources and 20% more of energy savings) as well as in currently negotiated EU multiannual budget (20% of all resources targeted on sustainability), proving that it occupies clearly a place close to the heart of the overall European agenda.
While visiting Austria, President Barroso also met with Chancellor Werner Faymann.