EU leaders go into a budget battle on Thursday under pressure to avoid some glaring mistakes of the past: half-empty motorways, airports that barely see a flight and high-speed rail lines with few passengers to repay vast construction costs.
As David Cameron flies in to do battle over the EU’s seven-year €1tn budget deal, we attempt to separate myth from fact.
On the eve of the European Council of 22-23 November, focused on the multiannual financial framework (MFF) 2014-2020, environmental organisations warned that the existing budget proposals will not allow the transition to a green economy foreseen under the ‘Europe 2020’ strategy. This opportunity cannot be passed up, note the organisations, which point out that there are “many possibilities to spend available funds better and steer them to green sectors that create growth and jobs”. As it stands, the “proposed budget reflects the special interests of each member state, not the interests of the EU as a whole,” regret the NGOs.
Wrangling between EU member states over the budget is weakening Europe at a time when it needs strength to compete in a globalised world, campaigners are warning.
Europe may not be dealing with freak weather events at the moment, but in economic and social terms the storm clouds over the continent have become a permanent feature on the landscape — for at least the past three years now — and the hard rain is now falling, in bucket loads. In the process, much needed action on climate change could be swept away in the deluge.
What a week in the fight for clean British energy: scandal erupted when Conservative Party members were exposed colluding with James Delinpole, in his obsessive efforts to wipe wind-farms off the map, and Ed Davey’s statement in the Commons yesterday about energy companies fixing gas prices demonstrated once again the urgent need to overhaul our energy system. Not only are elements of this government trying to undermine a green future here in the UK, they are also threatening green hopes in Ukraine. Among all the energy market mayhem, you’d be forgiven for missing it, but in addition to messing up our own clean energy karma, the UK may actually back a huge European loan for the Ukrainian nuclear power sector. http://www.foe.co.uk/blog/nuclear_energy_uk_ukraine_38000.html
Das Klima und die Wirtschaft leiden unter dem starrsinnigen EU-Haushaltsstreit. Durch das politische Gezerre um die Höhe des künftigen EU-Budgets drohen “grüne” Wirtschaftsimpulse unterzugehen. Jede weitere Verzögerung könnte die Zweckbindung von 20 Prozent der EU-Mittel für Klimaschutzmaßnahmen ramponieren.
On the eve of Angela Merkel’s address to the European Parliament, Markus Trilling sketches out how the German chancellor might like to propose a way out of the deepening EU budget impasse.
EXCLUSIVE: This year’s annual European coal industry conference in Brussels is being co-organised by the Central European Energy Partners (CEEP), which was founded by, and is mostly made up of, state-owned Polish energy firms.