It was not the most comfortable sight: figures trapped inside a cube and people in suits standing outside and making sure no one gets out.
It wasn’t meant to be comforting either. Marko’s art installation symbolised EU citizens locked in a polluted environment, while European bankers and politicians are keeping them stuck in it by supporting and investing in the Sostanj lignite power plant project.
The European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development have approved loans for the project, although it would make a laughing stock of Slovenia’s and the EU’s climate targets: By 2050, together with all other EU members, Slovenia will have to reduce its overall CO2 emissions by at least 80 percent. The new block at Sostanj alone would take up almost all of the country’s emissions allowance if the required reduction is achieved. In practice, this means that either Slovenia gives up the idea of building this plant or it will have to break its emissions reduction commitments as an EU member.
Many Slovenians oppose this project and this summer 18 000 people signed a petition asking the Slovene government to reconsider its plans. Now the Slovenian parliament has just refused to support a state guarantee for the banks’ loans.
The action was meant to bring those critical voices also to the centre of European decision making. Bankwatch, Focus and Banktrack will make sure decision makers will remember it when stepping inside a meeting room.
Images from the action are below. Marko’s story and a quick round-up of Sostanj and other EU funded coal power plants can be read in the leaflet we prepared for the action (pdf).
Photos by: Pieter Delputte
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Institution: EBRD | EIB
Theme: Energy & climate
Tags: European Commission | energy | fossil fuels