During a keynote speech delivered at the EU Green Deal Summit on 26 September, European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen once more talked of the glass industry and the flat glass industry.
Specifically this time she said, “Glass production is a national pride of Czechia. And rightly so. Europe cherishes these great national industrial treasures. And today, with the Volta project, we are investing in cleaner glass production. We are supporting the electrification of existing flat-glass furnaces so that they can cut emissions by more than 75 percent. And this is vital to make the European flat-glass industry competitive, also in the clean economy of tomorrow.”
Glass for Europe welcomes this recognition at the highest European political level of the realities and efforts of the glass industry, and in this case of the flat glass industry specifically, for the second time in one year.
Last September, the EC President referred to the need for focused support to the glass industry to face off the energy crisis in her State of the Union speech. This year, the focus is rather placed on the industry’s decarbonisation efforts with the support of the EU and the importance of a competitive European flat glass industry.
It is very encouraging that the flat glass industry’s efforts are praised and that an innovative pilot project led by Glass for Europe members receive support from the EU innovation fund. The strive for a competitive European flat glass industry in a climate neutral Europe will however require more EU initiatives and conducive policies. The availability and affordability of clean energy sources, the development of recycling infrastructures, the renovation of buildings will be equally decisive factors. All these items are precisely what Glass for Europe will keep focusing on in the next months to make Glass for Europe’s 2050 vision “Flat glass in a climate neutral economy” a reality.
Let us feel encouraged by this statement from the EC President. It shows the flat glass industry is on the right track, the association’s messages are heard and there are policy interlocutors to work with on these issues.
It’s an excellent basis to intensify common efforts.