Back to the past for energy and climate policy!
Gabi Zimmer, President of the GUE/NGL Group in the European Parliament, commented on today's European Council meeting of Heads of State and Government where energy strategy and a reorientation of EU climate policy are being discussed:
“Yesterday the Commission presented to the European Parliament its recommendations to the Council on energy policy. Using the same old excuse of international competitiveness, the Commission is pandering to the lobbyists of large energy companies, which are now establishing the costs of much-needed energy at European level. “
MEP Zimmer continued:
“This should not be about competitiveness, based on energy costs, but EU-wide, European and global co-operation to supply people with energy. Some 50 to 125 million people are affected by fuel poverty today. People are dying in winter on the streets and even in their homes, because they cannot afford the current high prices for power or they risk being thrown out of their homes. For the Commission, this does not seem to matter.”
“If the European Commission is only speaking about 'open and competitive energy markets' now, this means that policy is geared primarily to the needs of corporations. To provide affordable energy, Commissioner Oettinger is counting on cheap coal, nuclear energy, fracking and the energy industry's mega projects for fossil energy production and costly offshore wind farms. This is a definite step backwards for energy and climate policy,” Zimmer said.
“The Council will probably adopt this retrograde proposal by the Commission,” she concluded.