Gas companies spend €104m lobbying to make sure Europe remains &aposlocked in&apos to non-renewable fuels for many years, report finds

Gas industry firms are spending countless euros influencing European policy makers to make sure that the continent is constantly on the depend on non-renewable fuels for many years in the future, according to a different report.

It claims that gas lobby groups used their financial firepower to push the “myth” that gas is really a clean fuel to be able to win financial and political backing in the European Commission for pricey and potentially useless pipelines along with other infrastructure.

An organization representing gas companies and hang up through the Commission is mandated to recommend projects after which analyse their cost-effectiveness, which a lot of its people build, the report from campaign group Corporate Europe Observatory (Chief executive officer) stated.

Previously 2 . 5 years, gas industry representatives met using the two European commissioners responsible for climate and policy as well as their cabinets 460 occasions, based on CEO’s analysis of European transparency filings.

Eight from the 10 most typical business visitors received by Miguel Arias Cañete, commissioner for climate action and, and Maros Sefcovic, vice-president for energy union, were from the gas industry, Chief executive officer stated. Overall, gas companies all areas of the availability chain spent €104m (£92m) on lobbying in 2016, though it’s not easy to determine just how this expenditure was allotted.

This dwarfs the quantity spent by public interest groups promoting a fossil-free future with a factor of 30, based on the analysis. It didn’t say just how much renewables companies allocated to lobbying for the reason that time.

The very best spender is CEFIC, the ecu Chemical Industry Council, having a budget well over €12m and 82 lobbyists, adopted by Whirlpool which spent €5.75m in 2016 and Covering which spent €4.75m.

The report alleges there are obvious conflicts of great interest in the manner gas projects are approved and just how cash is allotted for his or her construction. Fossil-fuel infrastructure companies supply the commission having a “wish list” of projects that they believe ought to be completed within the next ten years, using a group known as the ecu Network of Transmission System Operators for Gas (ENTSO-G).

Their list is dependant on projections of interest in gas, which ENTSO-G calculates. Its past projections considerably overestimated gas usage, based on independent global warming think tank E3G. The commission then asks ENTSO-G to analyse the expense and advantages of these projects, even though, in additional than three-quarters of cases, the group’s own people are in position to take advantage of their construction, Chief executive officer stated. The following listing of suggested Projects of Common Interest (PCIs) arrives prior to the finish of the year.

Projects incorporated around the PCI list might have their permits and impact assessments fast-tracked and are generally qualified for a number of funding streams, such as the Connecting Europe Facility, that has already passed out greater than £1bn to gas PCIs.

Despite its claims not to handle lobbying, ENTSO-G provided draft amendments to multiple MEPs around the recent regulation guaranteeing future gas supply because it undergone the ecu Parliament, based on a parliamentary source reported by Chief executive officer.

The group seemed to be present throughout a shadow rapporteurs’ meeting, where compromises are thrashed out between your political parties.

ENTSO-G’s proposal for emergency gas supply routes – extra dedicated pipelines – was eventually suggested by three different political parties and recognized through the European Parliament.

The audience also shares exactly the same office in addition to several staff with Gas Infrastructure Europe (GIE), a trade association which spent €1.5m on lobbying throughout the 2 . 5 year period.

The real influence of the profession might be considerably more than case study suggests due to poor EU transparency rules. The EU’s Transparency Register should really keep an eye on lobbying activity but it’s entirely voluntary and just top-level conferences are recorded. The majority of work, however, is performed at lower quantity of a Commission, Chief executive officer stated.

From the gas companies recognized by they as positively lobbying within the EU, 40 percent simply didn’t show up on the register, while some had made records previously but had then stopped doing this, the report stated. Just 11 of ENTSO-G’s people take presctiption the register, despite their closeness to EU policy-making.

“If requested, obviously the gas industry will say we want more gas,” stated Pascoe Sabido, a investigator and campaigner at Chief executive officer. 

Smoke increases from gas storage tanks following a explosive device attack against a condition-run cooking gas factory in Taji at Baghdad’s northern borders (Reuters)

“Turkeys aren’t likely to election for Christmas. However the EU ought to know much better than to hear the fossil fuel industry. As seriously interested in tackling global warming then your companies causing it ought to be stored as a long way away from policy-makers as you possibly can. Working In London, in The city and also at the approaching United nations climate talks.” 

The revelations be world leaders get ready for the United nations Global Warming Conference in Bonn, Germany in a few days to determine the following steps to apply the Paris climate agreement and accelerate the transformation to some low-carbon world.

‘Clean’ gas

Many gas and oil companies have pressed gas like a “bridge towards the future” a method to reduce co2 emissions while supplying the consistent way to obtain souped up that renewables like solar and wind cannot yet deliver.

But gas is mainly methane – a green house gas 34 occasions stronger than co2, based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Global Warming. Any unburned methane released in to the atmosphere therefore plays a role in global warming and many gas projects happen to be proven to leak quite a lot of the gas.

Scientists calculate that the leakage rate of just 3 percent makes gas a larger cause of global warming than coal, while multiple research has discovered that the underestimates the quantity of gas that escapes. A 2016 study through the American Geophysical Union discovered that methane emissions in america leaped by greater than 30 percent between 2002 and 2014. Gas is another competitor to alternative energy.

“Investing in big infrastructure risks locking us into using gas for many years and slowing lower the transition to renewable energy”, CEO’s report stated.

“In particular, tighter regulation on global warming and using non-renewable fuels would produce a chance of stranded assets, ie infrastructure built now won’t be functional, not to mention lucrative, inside a decarbonised futures, making investments useless.

“We can therefore anticipate the gas industry will marshall all its firepower to prevent the development of any rules discouraging using gas and devaluing its assets.”

The Independent has contacted the ecu Commission and ENTSO-G for comment.

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Wilbur Ross states CEOs were wrong to stop Trump’s councils after Charlottesville

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross commented around the disbandment of President Jesse Trump’s manufacturing and economic councils: “What’s sad is perfect for business leaders to stop an chance to help policy over some singular problem with that they disagree. I do not think that’s very considered.” (Washington Publish Live)

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross found President Trump’s defense Friday, quarrelling that CEOs were wrong to stop the White-colored House business advisory councils within the wake of Trump’s questionable Charlottesville remarks.

“I think what’s sad is perfect for business leaders to stop an chance to help policy over some singular problem with that they disagree,” Ross stated in an interview with the writer from the Washington Post’s Daily 202 e-newsletter, James Hohmann. “I don’t believe that’s perfectly considered.”

Trump received prevalent condemnation after he blamed “both sides” in Charlottesville, appearing to came an equivalence between white-colored supremacists and counterprotesters. Numerous high-profile business leaders resigned from Trump’s Chief executive officer advisory groups dads and moms that adopted, and that he disbanded the councils as increasing numbers of chief executives planned to resign en masse.

Ross hasn’t stated anything openly about Charlottesville. On Friday, his only remarks around the subject were he thought CEOs lost of line to resign in the Strategy and Policy Forum and also the Manufacturing Council.

The majority of the CEOs who left “didn’t election for that president to start with,Inches Ross stated, indicating he think it is a political move. “Elon Musk isn’t exactly the right-wing person.”

Musk, mind of vehicle company Tesla, was among the first to stop Trump’s councils, prior to the Charlottesville comments. He and Disney Chief executive officer Bob Iger left in June after Trump pulled the U . s . States from the Paris climate agreement. Most CEOs continued to be around the councils this summer time, quarrelling it had become easier to be possess a voice while dining these days, however they altered their brains after Charlottesville, triggering full of exodus in the advisory groups.

Ross’s comments Friday protecting Trump have been in sharp contrast to individuals of Gary Cohn, mind from the National Economic Council. After initially facing critique for remaining quiet, Cohn told the Financial Occasions the administration “can and should fare better in consistently and positively condemning such groups.Inches Cohn apparently drafted instructions of resignation but made a decision to stay to operate on policies just like an overhaul from the tax code he believes are important to the U . s . States’ success.

Trump places unparalleled combination on loyalty, and that he is apparently so angry with Cohn he might fire him. In the tax reform rally in Missouri, Trump required time to indicate Ross and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin towards the crowd, but he didn’t mention Cohn, despite the fact that he seemed to be attending and is among the top White-colored House negotiators around the tax code.

The dissolution of Trump’s advisory councils was the most recent illustration of tension between your White-colored House and CEOs after Charlottesville, but Ross ignored that tension as media fodder.

“In general, world of business spirits are great. The regulatory reliefs which have been granted with this administration happen to be very well accepted,Inches Ross stated. Tax reform may be the next priority, and Ross states he listens to overwhelming support for your among business leaders.

“We could be much better off like a country to possess a lower base rate and less complications,” Ross stated. He decline to talk about how low the speed is going since the facts are now “largely at the disposal of Congress.”

Ross is really a close advisor towards the president and it was early to back Trump throughout the campaign. Trump drawn on Ross to be among his economic advisors throughout the campaign. Ross co-authored a paper with Peter Navarro, the mind from the White-colored House National Trade Council, quarrelling that trade was hurting the U . s . States and with much tighter limitations on imports.

Before joining the Trump administration, Ross was a billionaire investor who frequently bought distressed companies inexpensively and attempted to resuscitate them for any profit. At Commerce, a sprawling agency he over a “conglomerate,” Ross oversees from trade policy towards the team that monitors hurricanes.

Certainly one of Ross’s greatest approaching tasks is overseeing the 2020 Census. He states he’s “actively searching” for any new director and the man would most likely select a businessman to do the job since the census is “huge management challenge.”

Mars counters Trump’s climate stance with $1bn sustainability plan

The organization backlash keeps growing against Jesse Trump’s withdrawal in the Paris climate accord, with Mars launching a $1bn sustainability plan as well as an M&M’s campaign centred on alternative energy.

It’s the latest climate move through the family owned firm, which become a vocal critic of america president’s decision to drag from the 2015 climate pact, saying it had been “disappointed” using the withdrawal and stressing that corporations couldn’t do it yourself if this found tackling global warming.

Mars has become moving out a $1bn (£771m) investment to assist cut green house gas emissions across its value chain by 67% by 2050, operate a poverty reduction and sustainability programme for maqui berry farmers and suppliers, and increase food security and safety efforts.

Leader Grant F Reid stated: “This plan’s about not only doing better, but doing what’s necessary. We’re carrying this out because it’s the best factor to complete but additionally because it’s good business.

“We have a much an aggressive advantage from the more resource-efficient logistics, and from making certain that everybody within our logistics does well.”

The Peanut, Twix, Milky Way and Skittles maker has additionally revealed intends to champion alternative energy through its M&M’s brand, featuring pictures of items like wind generators alongside its red and yellow chocolate figures.

Its sustainability investments and M&M’s campaign were announced in front of the United nations general set up and climate week that will run from 18 to 24 September in New You are able to.

Reid stated: “If we’re to assist deliver around the targets agreed in Paris and also the United nations sustainable development goals, there needs to be an enormous step change.

“While a lot of companies happen to be focusing on being more sustainable, the present degree of progress is nowhere close enough.Inches

The Paris agreement aims to avoid our planet from warming up by 2C since the beginning of the commercial age.

Since the earth has already warmed about 1.1C because the Industrial Revolution, the accord targeted at ensuring the brink wasn’t breached with every nation curbing heat-trapping emissions.

Basically a really few scientists say warming is because of human activity.

The main executive added: “Mars has been around business for four generations and promises to be for the following four generations.

“The best way which will happen is that if we all do things differently to make sure that the earth is good and all sorts of individuals our extended supply chains possess the chance to thrive.”