Fiala: If Zeman had a problem with the Green Deal, he should have told Babiš

Jan Handrejch

According to Government Chief Petr Fiala (ODS), the Czech Republic can’t get out of the so-called Green Deal for Europe, as President Miloš Zeman proposed in his Christmas message. He said he should have communicated his reservations to Andrej Babiš (ANO), who agreed to the deal in 2019.

“The Green Deal is a framework that was agreed upon in 2019. There is no mechanism to get out of it, ” Fiala said on Sunday, adding that the deal is meant to ensure that Europe does not exacerbate the climate. “Babiš agreed to it,” he stressed.

Moreover, he admitted that he had been critical of the previous government during the negotiations. “I was convinced that the agreement to the Green Deal should have been made conditional on the core being part of the clean resources,” he stressed.

In his Christmas speech last Sunday, Zeman said that he considered the deal to be the result of making environmentalism a religion. At the same time, he identified it as the leading cause of the rise in energy prices in the Czech Republic, which he said would continue.

The agreement, he said, orders people to stop heating with natural gas in 2030 and not drive cars with internal combustion engines in 2035. The measures mentioned by Zeman are mainly at the stage of proposals by the EU executive. In the case of natural gas, the proposal envisages a ten-year delay, and in the case of vehicles, 2035 is the possible end of sales of the new cars in question.

“If we are to at least mitigate this increase, we must get out of the so-called Green Deal for Europe,” Zeman said.

Now Fiala has identified it as a priority that gas should be among the intermediate sources, and therefore nuclear power, in particular, should be among the clean sources. “We have a great chance to push it through,” he declared.

The prime minister’s assertion is backed up by a report in the Financial Times on Saturday that the European Commission wants to include nuclear power and natural gas on the list of green investments. Czech politicians across party lines have already praised the information.