European Commissioner for Regional Policy, Daniela Hübner announced on March 9, 2009 that €105 billion will be invested in the “green economy” through the EU Cohesion Policy. The funding represents more than 30% of the regional policy budget for 2007-2013. Commissioner Hübner said: “Support for the green economy and the environment goes hand-in-hand with the Cohesion Policy’s objective to deliver sustainable growth, jobs and competitiveness. In a difficult financial climate, this investment will be instrumental in creating long-term employment and reviving local economies, as well as underpinning the EU’s commitment to the fight against climate change.”The €105 billion dedicated to green projects and jobs is almost three times greater than the sum allocated in the 2000-2006 budgetary period. A large part of the envelope (€54 billion) is designed to help Member States to comply with EU environmental legislation.

With €48 billion targeted at measures aimed at achieving EU climate objectives and creating a low carbon economy, the Cohesion Policy is making a considerable contribution to these goals. This includes €23 billion for railways, €6 billion for clean urban transport, €4.8 billion for renewable energies and €4.2 billion for energy efficiency. The EU Parlaiment is expected to adopt the Commission proposal on expanding the use of EU Structural funds for eneegry efficiency and renewable funding.  Nearly half of the Member States (Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and the UK) have integrated indicators for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions into their Cohesion Policy programmes. France, for example, has developed a unique carbon evaluation tool to monitor CO2 emissions produced by all projects funded with EU support. A detailed overview of the speicifc amounts that will go to EU Member States can be found here.