EU Commission President Jose Barroso said Sunday that the 27-member union had to move on taking climate control steps and position itself as the world leader in the fight against further damage to the environment.
Can the EU save the planet?
In an interview with German tabloid Bild am Sonntag, Barroso said that the upcoming EU summit at the beginning of March would give state leaders an opportunity to take decisive steps regarding "one of the great global challenges of our time.
Barroso thinks it's time to stop talking
"We have talked for long enough -- now we must act," said Barroso, who is planning on delivering a key note on climate policy in his home country Portugal on Monday.
He called on members states to come to "clear-cut decisions about the corner stones of our future energy policy as 80 percent of all carbon gas emissions come from energy."
Barroso added that the EU Commission was committed to lower emissions by 30 percent by 2020.
"Citizens want that these goals are really reached and we cannot afford not to reach them," he said.
German calls for bulb ban
Will energy-efficient light bulbs (right) soon replace all conventional ones?
German Environment Minister Sigmar Gabriel meanwhile came out in support of a ban against incandescent light bulbs. The Australian government announced last week that it plans to ban this type of light bulbs as a climate control measure.
"Europe cannot really afford products that have an energy efficiency of five percent, such as incandescent light bulbs," Gabriel wrote to EU Environmental Commissioner Stavros Dimas, according to Bild am Sonntag.
The German minister added that Europe should introduce standards against energy-wasting products. According to studies, some 25 million tons of carbon monoxide emissions could be prevented if old-fashioned light bulbs would be replaced with newer, energy-efficient models.
Dimas himself seems open to the idea.
"We are testing whether an EU standard for environmentally-friendly light bulbs can be introduced," Dimas told German newsmagazine Focus.