Climate and Energy
When big business comes across EU climate targets it instinctively reaches for its big guns, unleashing CEOs and a volley of lobbyists in an attempt to avoid substantial reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The first six months of 2011 have seen the latest round of this contest, with two policy initiatives re-opening the debate on European reduction targets. A new EP report, calling upon the EU to raise its greenhouse gas emissions reduction target from 20 to 30 per cent, will be voted on at the 23 June plenary session of the European Parliament. This is a step in the right direction, although it still falls well short of what is needed to tackle climate change.
Commissioner Antonio Tajani thought he was on the platform at the European Business Summit to talk about the EU's industrial policy – a brief engagement with a not very packed conference hall before rushing off to his meeting with the Steel Association.
Climate stole the agenda at the European Business Summit's opening press conference in Brussels, after organisers were forced to invite a representative from Greenpeace onto the platform, following their blockade of the event.
The annual lobby forum, which this year has attracted 10 Commissioners, including Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, seems to be giving the climate far less priority this year.
A new report by Corporate Europe Observatory details how industry lobbied allies within DG Enterprise, to delay DG Clima's plans to ban dodgy offsets from the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS).
Industrial gas projects currently account for more than 80% of the credits bought by European polluters to offset carbon emissions under the EU ETS. But evidence suggests that many of them do not infact represent extra cuts in emissions.
Emissions trading is the European Union’s flagship measure for tackling climate change, and it is failing badly. In theory it provides a cheap and efficient means to limit greenhouse gas reductions within an ever-tightening cap, but in practice it has rewarded major polluters with windfall profits, while undermining efforts to reduce pollution and achieve a more equitable and sustainable economy. The third phase of the scheme, beginning in 2013, is supposed to rectify the “teething problems” that have led to the failures to date.
In a speech in Davos, South African President Jacob Zuma, host of the international climate talks scheduled to take place in Durban later this year, urged business to be a party at the talks and play a bigger role. His comments will have been welcomed by business leaders, particularly the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) who have long campaigned for greater involvement.
Big carbon polluters succeeded in persuading a British MEP to ensure they benefited from billions of euro in public subsidies, according to a new report published today by Corporate Europe Observatory and UK-group Spinwatch.
Brussels, 7 December 2010 – Funding for the European think tanks promoting denialist views on the science of climate change remains clouded in secrecy, a new investigation by Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) published today has revealed .
Brussels, 13 October – Business attempts to undermine effective European action on climate change and finance regulation are exposed today with the launch of the Worst EU Lobbying Awards 2010 . Corporate influence over governments is blocking desperately needed measures to stop the worsening of the financial and climate crises.
From today, members of the public can vote online at www.worstlobby.eu for the most deserving ‘winner’ in this year’s two categories – climate and finance. Online voting will run until 25 November 2010.
Corporate Europe Observatory
Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) is a research and campaign group working to expose and challenge the privileged access and influence enjoyed by corporations and their lobby groups in EU policy making.