The Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), the most western part of the Southern Gas Corridor, a pipeline project to bring gas from Azerbaijan to Europe is promoted by the European Commission as a strategic asset for Europe’s energy security. A July visit to over 30 Albanian villages revealed the high level of dissatisfaction and confusion for people impacted by the construction of TAP.
Espoo bodies sent several specific recommendations concerning its non-compliance with the Espoo Convention to Ukraine. Nonetheless Ukraine seems to be either ignoring those or taking insufficient steps towards compliance. Therefore Bankwatch summarises the state-of-play in this letter and asks the Implementation Committee to consider a number of steps to ensure the Convention’s requirements are properly met by Ukraine.
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and Romania all plan new lignite power plants during the next few years. In contrast, most EU countries are giving up building new coal plants and seven EU states are already coal-free. Since the European Investment Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the World Bank have virtually halted lending for new coal power plants, most of them are due to be financed by Chinese state banks – ExIm Bank and the China Development Bank.
The report tackles the common assumption that continued economic growth necessarily entails a rise in energy consumption. The analysis shows that this is not what happens in reality, in Romania and in other EU countries. The Romanian energy ministry acknowledges that since 2009 the country's GDP has been growing while energy consumption has been falling, but it has so far failed to factor this trajectory in the ongoing development of a new national energy strategy.
Following the vote of UK citizens to leave the European Union, the group of ten of the leading environmental networks active at European level comment on the need to engage in a new reflection on the future direction of Europe. Now more than ever, it is crucial for the EU to show it is united, not paralysed, and remains willing and able to act for the benefit of its citizens and their natural environment.
Civil Society Europe brings together thirty European civil society networks around the European values of sustainability, equality, solidarity, democracy and inclusion.
We now await, from the European institutions, a reaction which puts these values at the centre of European policy and which starts a genuine civil dialogue between the institutions and civil society.
For our organisations, which bring together tens of millions of members, this is the only way to respond to the crises in society which have influenced the way in which citizens think about the European project.
Energy Cities, Counter Balance, CEE Bankwatch Network and Change Partnership see the ongoing revision of the European ETS as a crucial opportunity to support the EU in meeting its 2030 climate targets, deliver on the Paris agreement and accelerate the locally driven energy transition. We welcome the proposal to establish an ETS (Emission Trading System) Modernisation Fund for low-income Member States.
Earlier in 2016, Bankwatch approached the European Commission's Directorate General for Economic and Financial Affairs, and made a request for documents related to the EUR 300 million Euratom loan for Ukraine's nuclear safety upgrade programme. Specifically, we asked for the evidence used by the Commission in making the first EUR 100 million disbursement from the loan.
This analysis of the European Investment Bank's (EIB) energy lending shows that the bank has been effectively hindering Europe's energy transition. Most notably, during 2013-2015, EIB lending to renewables in Europe has dropped whereas its lending to fossil fuels has modestly but consistently increased. Moreover, while EU leaders have repeatedly emphasised the 'energy efficiency first' principle, the EIB has been lagging behind with only 3.6% of its lending across sectors going to energy conservation projects.
This sociological survey included 162 (or 65.9%) of the registered 246 households in Drmno, Serbia. It illustrates the bleak reality in the village where a large majority of households have health problems, cracks in houses and other negative impacts from the nearby lignite power plant and mine.
The so-called European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) should unlock additional investment of at least EUR 315 billion over a three year period (2015-2017). One of the projects benefiting from the financing concerns the design, construction, operation and maintenance of about 27km of a motorway around Bratislava. The project will come with high costs, will damage biodiversity and likely not solve local transport problems.
CEKOR, as a non-governmental watchdog organisation, has since 1999 strived to promote sustainable development in Serbia and has a strong track record in supporting local communities harmed by development projects to advocate for their rights.
The so-called European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) should unlock additional investment of at least EUR 315 billion over a three year period (2015-2017). One of the projects benefiting from the EU financing is a program that aims to promote energy efficiency in the housing stock through the funding of certain regional/local initiatives supporting energy renovation of private residential buildings in France.
All the Western Balkans countries have committed to increase their share of renewable energy by 2020 to reach between 25 and 40 percent of their energy mix, as part of their obligations under the Energy Community Treaty. Yet this is far from obvious when examining their investment plans for new power generation capacity. Governments are actively planning to build 2800 MW of new coal plants with construction cost of at least EUR 4.5 billion. In contrast, these countries are only planning to build around 1166 MW of wind power plants, at an estimated cost of EUR 1.89 billion.