EU outlines plan for clean tech future boosted by subsidies

Jan 16, 2023, 12:50 PM | Updated: Jan 17, 2023, 4:37 pm
EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos...

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

(AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, left, and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen attend a session at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, left, and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen attend a session at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
            
              First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, left, and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen attend a session at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum is taking place in Davos from Jan. 16 until Jan. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union pushed forward on Tuesday with a major clean tech industrial plan which not only should keep the continent in the vanguard of plotting a greener future but also guarantee its economic survival as it faces challenges from China and the United States.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen presented the outlines for her “Green Deal Industrial Plan” that will make it much easier to push through subsidies for green industries and pool EU-wide projects that are boosted with major funding as the EU pursues the goal of being climate neutral by 2050.

“We know that we have a small window to invest in clean tech and innovation to gain leadership before the fossil fuel economy becomes obsolete,” von der Leyen said.

At the same time in Germany, climate protests resumed Tuesday over the destruction of a small village to allow expansion of a coal mine, as the country strives to boost its energy security amid the cut in Russian gas supply.

Von der Leyen used a speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos to say that on top of feeding its own industry, the 27-nation bloc will become much more forceful in countering unfair trading practices, if they come from Washington, or more importantly, Beijing.

“We see aggressive attempts to attract our industrial capacities away to China and elsewhere,” she said.

And as it is trying to wean itself of an overdependence on Russia energy since the war in Ukraine started almost a year ago, the EU doesn’t want to become as dependent on China for rare earth materials, which are critical to the development of battery storage, hydrogen and wind energy.

“We have a compelling need to make this net-zero transition without creating new dependencies,” von der Leyen said.

Even if the EU has gripes with both Washington and Beijing about being squeezed out of their markets, von der Leyen came down much harder on China in her speech, underscoring she still has hopes of making amends with the Biden administration — with which the EU sorely needs to stand shoulder to shoulder in opposing Russia.

In Brussels too, where EU Trade Commissioner Valdis Dombrovskis had talks with his U.S. counterpart Catherine Tai, both went out of their way to play down the EU’s complaints about the $369 billion U.S. Inflation Reduction Act.

“Going our own way is neither efficient nor desirable. Instead, we should create economies of scale across the Atlantic and set common standards,” Dombrovskis said.

Von der Leyen’s plan will now become the key driver for debate among the EU’s member nations before their 27 leaders meet for a Feb. 9-10 summit on the issue. Before such a plan becomes reality, the EU needs to find a balance on the ability of economic juggernauts like Germany and France to splurge state aid and, on the other side, grant funds to small member states, which have no such firepower.

No specific figures were mentioned, but going on what the United States is putting in its U.S. Inflation Reduction Act and how the EU already waved through 672 billion euros ($727.5 billion) in aid to allow member states to deal with the impact of the war in Ukraine, any EU commitment will be massive.

Many EU leaders saw the U.S. act as an attempt to cut European firms out of the lucrative American market for clean energy technology like electric vehicles and excessively favors a “made-in-America” approach that discriminates against European multinationals.

In a letter to EU member states, European Commission Vice President Margrethe Vestager wrote last week that the U.S. plan “risks luring some of our EU businesses into moving investments to the U.S.”

It underscores a continuing unease in the EU that it will become irrelevant in the economy of the future, as it is squeezed by the U.S. and China.

“As a union, we are not living up to our full economic potential. Our productivity lags behind and fewer and fewer of the biggest firms on the planet are EU-based,” Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson said.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - Military personnel watch as Air Force One, with President Donald Trump, aboard prepares to d...
Associated Press

Boeing bids farewell to an icon, delivers last 747 jumbo jet

Boeing bids farewell to an icon on Tuesday: It's delivering its final 747 jumbo jet.
8 hours ago
seattle police...
Associated Press

Name of Seattle officer in crash that killed woman released

Police have released the name of a Seattle police officer who was responding to a medical call when his patrol SUV hit and killed a 23-year-old Jaahnavi Kandula last week in a city crosswalk.
8 hours ago
Rodney Wells, center, stepfather of Tyre Nichols, listens to speakers at a prayer gathering at the ...
Associated Press

Tyre Nichols’ family to address additional police discipline

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — On the eve of Tyre Nichols ‘ funeral, his family plans to gather Tuesday with the Rev. Al Sharpton and attorney Ben Crump at the historic Mason Temple in Memphis, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his final speech the night before he was assassinated, to speak about the latest […]
1 day ago
FILE - Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., leaves a House GOP conference meeting on Capitol Hill in Washing...
Associated Press

Santos won’t serve on 2 committees for now, lawmakers say

WASHINGTON (AP) — Embattled Rep. George Santos of New York told Republican colleagues in a closed-door meeting Tuesday that he is temporarily stepping down from his two congressional committees, lawmakers said. Santos has faced numerous calls for his resignation and is facing multiple investigations by prosecutors over his personal and campaign finances and lies about […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Durenberger, former US senator from Minnesota, dies at 88

Former U.S. Senator David Durenberger, a Minnesota Republican who espoused a progressive brand of politics and criticized the GOP after his political career, died Tuesday at age 88. Durenberger’s health had declined in recent months, his longtime spokesperson Tom Horner said. Horner told The Associated Press that Durenberger died Tuesday morning of natural causes. He […]
1 day ago
The Second Gentleman of the United States, Douglas Emhoff, stands between concrete steles after a w...
Associated Press

Emhoff visits synagogue, Holocaust memorial in Berlin

BERLIN (AP) — Doug Emhoff, the husband of U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, met with Ukrainian refugees at a Berlin synagogue and visited the city’s Holocaust memorial on Tuesday as he wrapped up a tour of Poland and Germany focused on Holocaust remembrance and combating rising antisemitism. Emhoff took part in a roundtable event with […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
EU outlines plan for clean tech future boosted by subsidies