Corporate Europe Observatory

Exposing the power of corporate lobbying in the EU

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In whose hands is the future of bees?


en francais / espanol abajo


Bees and other pollinating insect numbers are falling dramatically, putting their future survival in jeopardy with catastrophic consequences for ecosystems and agriculture. In some European countries, bees are disappearing from the environment at a shocking rate of up to 20-32% a year . A number of factors are thought to be contributing to this decline, including the emergence of new viruses and the changing climate, but there are clear indications that modern agricultural practices, particularly the dominance of monoculture farming with its reliance on pesticides could be key.


Scientific evidence suggests that changes in farming practice could be leaving bee populations vulnerable to disease and parasites, increasing mortality rates – and that changes in the use of pesticides may even be responsible for the collapse of whole bee colonies. Improved testing and scrutiny of pesticide use is urgently needed – but in the European Union, this process appears to have been taken over by industry. The advisory groups responsible for drafting the guidelines on pesticide use are made up of corporate ‘experts’ from the pesticide industry.


This article looks at the situation faced by bees, the role of industry experts in determining risk assessments and the potential consequences for our food.



Read the full article (also in French and Spanish) here:


LEt’s kick Big Oil and Gas out of EU and UN climate policy. sign the petition now!

As world leaders prepare for COP22 in Marrakesh, Morocco, this November, the oil and gas industry retains a firm grip on the UN climate talks and climate policy in general. It’s time to break free and reclaim power over climate policy.
The EU-Canada trade deal CETA continues to draw heavy criticism. Behind the PR attempts to sell it as a progressive agreement - including a recent declaration hammered out by Brussels and Ottawa - CETA remains what it always has been: an attack on democracy, workers, and the environment.
Corporations like Monsanto have limitless resources to buy political power through lobbying. This short guide, published at the occasion of the International Monsanto Tribunal in The Hague, exposes some of Monsanto’s key lobbying strategies and tools, illustrated with examples from different parts of the world.
How the agribusiness lobby has weakened the new EU air quality directive with serious consequences for health. An article written by Vincent Harmsen en Berna van Vilsteren and translated by Iris Maher.
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The corporate lobby tour