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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Merkel Urges EU to Develop 'Green' Energy

BRUSSELS -- Europe has everything to lose if it does not move faster to cut carbon dioxide emissions and invest in more environmental energy sources, German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned EU leaders Thursday as they met to decide on a new green energy strategy.

The leaders gathering for summit talks were told that Europe must adopt tough measures needed to fight climate change and reduce its dependence on oil imports.

"We have got to go for a sensible solution, for the right policy mix, which will ultimately deliver results for our grandchildren," Merkel said after pre-summit talks with business and labor leaders to go over the EU's strategy for a low-carbon economy.

She and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the 27-nation bloc had to seek innovative solutions and set a global standard.

"We are now trying to ... ask the leaders of Europe to raise to the occasion," Barroso said, adding that Europe had to "show others we are serious about the issue."

Business and labor leaders, however, warned that moving too radically would do serious harm to Europe's economic growth, particularly if industry were faced with stringent rules to cut emissions.

Merkel is keen to get the EU to adopt new rules to boost the use of less-polluting, renewable energy sources like wind, solar and hydro power. She also wants the EU's move to pressure the United States, Russia and others to follow Europe's new pro-environment agenda.