By: Sara Kovač (Nova24tv.si)
Robert Golob’s government is more than obviously leading us into the abyss. Minister of Environment, Climate and Energy Bojan Kumer is in favour of finding a consensus on how much industry we want. Youth for Climate Justice say growth is too high. The Chamber of Commerce of Slovenia says that the too modest estimate of GDP growth is the result of modest growth in industrial production. Kumer says that the opinions of these two stakeholders have equal weight and that a consensus must be sought between them. At the same time, political commentator Mitja Iršič warns of the danger that the minister is actually talking about growing up as a political-economic strategy. “Folks, this is the most popular party in the country. These are no longer jokes. This is a direct threat to our way of life.”
Youth for Climate Justice submitted a public letter Plan for Climate Crisis to the Ministry of the Environment, Climate and Energy. In it they say that the presented draft of the National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP) leads to climate crisis. “The current draft update of the plan is unambitious and leads us to climate and biodiversity breakdown and deepening of social inequalities,” the Youth for Climate Justice movement criticised the draft of the renewed National Energy and Climate Plan (NEPN). That is why, according to Zupančič, they demand from the ministry that after several mass climate protests and being included in the NEPN preparation process, they are not only heard, but also finally considered. They demand measures that will lead Slovenia to carbon neutrality by 2040 in a nature-friendly and socially just way.
Several organisations have signed the public letter, including the Philosophical Institute ZRC SAZU, Greenpeace Slovenia, Focus, Slovenian Philanthropy, Slovenian Centre PEN, and the Mladi plus union, whose president is Tea Jarc.
When renovating the national energy and climate plan, the Chamber of Commerce of Slovenia (GZS) warns that it must include all possible energy, including renewable energy sources as well as nuclear energy. In the NEPN, the state must define how it will provide energy supply to the industry in the future, said General Director of GZS Vesna Nahtigal.
“It will not work without the second block of the nuclear power plant”
“As for the NEPN itself, we estimate, and we have already pointed this out through various consultations, that all possible energy must be included, i.e., whatever is possible from wind, sun, water, geothermal, but we are aware that without the second block of the nuclear power plant it will work,” said the general director of GZS in a statement to the media on the side-lines of the meeting. At the same time, she emphasised that we must come to a decision immediately, because delaying will not solve the problem.
In 2040 it will be too late
Another important piece of information that, according to her, confused them in the draft document, talks about nuclear energy only in 2040. “By then it will be too late, and we all know that we have to make decisions today, we know that for 10 years we have underinvested in all these types of energy and that it is high time to put our cards on the table and agree on how we will ensure energy self-sufficiency,” was the clear general director of GZS. Regarding the draft NEPN, the GZS also misses how the production of materials, and the provision of a competitive and reliable energy supply are included in it, explained Marko Drobnič, president of the association of metallic materials and non-metals at the GZS and president of the Taluma board, on the side-lines of the meeting.
The minister would seek consensus!
“I have carefully read both documents, both the one prepared by the youth and the GZS document, and a key challenge emerges from them: an overly modest estimate of GDP growth as a result of the modest growth of industrial production, which exposes the economy, and on the other hand, the youth exposes the problem of excessively high growth of the industry,” Minister Bojan Kumer said at the meeting, as reported by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He is convinced that a consensus will have to be found.
Kumer therefore says that the opinions of these two stakeholders (Youth for Climate Justice and GZS) have the same weight and that a consensus must be sought between the manufacturing industry, which employs a quarter of the employed in Slovenia, and a pair of socialists in the Youth for Climate Justice movement, who they do not even support themselves without a budget. Economist Matej Lahovnik said: “Why does the minister use the term “young people demand lower growth”, even though it should be clear to him that they do not even represent all young people?!”
Dangerous act of Minister Kumer
Some non-governmental organisations therefore say that we have too high industrial growth, even though we are already lagging behind the EU average. What is most problematic is the behaviour of the minister, who would talk about growth, that is, about the contraction of production and consumption, which is extremely dangerous for our economy.