ArcelorMittal, Tata Call for Europe Climate Balance

ArcelorMittal is among steel companies that have called for European Union governments to weigh the impact of climate change policy on an industry that provides 350,000 jobs in the region.

The chief executive officers of 64 European steel companies, including the European units of Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal and Tata Steel Ltd., signed an open letter to EU heads of state and governments, according to a statement today from steel lobby group Eurofer.

“We, the undersigned CEOs, urge the heads of state and governments to restore balance between industrial, energy and climate policies in order to preserve the competitiveness of the industries which are at the core of the European economy,” the letter shows.

EU leaders meet in Brussels on March 20-21 as they look to set an end-of-year deadline for a decision on climate and energy strategy for 2030. The 28-nation bloc is trying to balance Europe’s ambition to lead the global fight against climate change with pledges to revive the region’s industry and cut the reliance on fossil fuels.

The planned framework, under which the commission proposed in January that the EU deepen its emission reductions to 40 percent by 2030, has divided governments and industry.

While 13 member states including the U.K. and Germany called earlier this month for a swift decision to adopt an ambitious strategy, a group of nations led by Poland urged further analysis of the proposed policies on the bloc’s economy. The EU’s current target is to reduce pollution by 20 percent by 2020 from 1990 levels.

Eurofer said in today’s document that the proposed target is “technically and economically impossible to achieve with current technologies.”

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