November 27th 2012International trade
A small club of international law firms, arbitrators and financial speculators are fuelling lawsuits by foreign investors against states that cost taxpayers billions of dollars and prevent legislation in the public interest. Emblematic cases include tobacco giant Philip Morris suing Uruguay and Australia over health warnings on cigarette packets, and Swedish energy multinational Vattenfall seeking $3.7bn from Germany following that country’s decision to phase-out nuclear energy. Profiting from Injustice uncovers a secretive but burgeoning legal industry which benefits from these disputes – at the expense of taxpayers, the environment and human rights.
November 13th 2012EFSA
Signed by several European civil society networks and organisations, this list of demands for the reform of EFSA was published on Monday 12 November during a conference of farmers, scientists and citizens held in the premises of Parma's University, Italy, and delivered to EFSA during a demonstration in front of its headquarters the following day. (summary - full version downloadable in the pdf below)
November 7th 2012Climate and energy
Oil and gas companies from the United States and across Europe are targeting Brussels in an all-out campaign to prevent EU-wide rules for the developing shale gas industry. No legislation has been proposed, but there has already been intensive lobbying in the European Parliament and Commission, with industry funding reports, advertisements and websites, designed to show that shale gas does not pose a threat to the environment or to public health, and to promote the fiction that it is a green source of fuel. This report maps out the lobby players ahead of vote in the European Parliament on the need for regulation.
November 6th 2012The power of lobbies
Around 97 full-time lobbyists defend the interests of the tobacco industry in Brussels, and the industry’s total annual lobbying budget in the EU capital exceeds €5.3 million, according to new research by Corporate Europe Observatory. But these figures are only the tip of the iceberg. And a key Dalligate-related question remains: is the mystery “company with expertise in EU affairs” allegedly working with Silvio Zammit, the political associate of former Health Commissioner John Dalli, in the register?