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Plenary Flash - 4-7 July 2022

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary session

Not our Taxonomy

After a cross-party alliance of MEPs in the Environment (ENVI) and Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) Committees rejected the labelling of nuclear power and gas as sustainable, the Commission's delegated act will now face a final vote in plenary. The EU Taxonomy is supposed to be a sustainability label and guide for investors, but the Commission is proposing to include nuclear power and gas. An absolute majority of 353 votes (out of a total of 705 MEPs) is needed to reject the Commission's proposal.

The Greens/EFA Group calls on all MEPs to reject the delegated act. With their proposal, the Commission is ignoring science and risks endangering the Taxonomy itself as many investors have said they would not use it if nuclear and gas were to be included. At a time when the EU is paying a high price for its dependency on foreign fossil fuels, it would be ill-advised to increase that dependency by labelling gas and nuclear as sustainable. The Green Deal must not be used to finance energies that harm the environment and climate and pose unmanageable risks. Public and private money should be invested in renewable energies to make the EU the first climate-neutral continent and to end dependency on Russia.

A cross-party press conference hosted by the Greens/EFA with MEPs from EPP, S&D, Renew, and The Left will be on Tuesday, 5 July at 9:00 in the Daphne Caruana Galizia Press Room, Weiss N-1/201 and online.

Debate: Wednesday, 6 July
Vote: Wednesday, 6 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Bas Eickhout (EP Co-Rapporteur for the Taxonomy Regulation), Michael Bloss, Jutta Paulus, Rasmus Andresen, Marie Toussaint, Damien Carême 

 

Digital Services Act (DSA)

MEPs will debate and vote on the outcome of the trilogue negotiations on the Digital Services Act, providing the toolbox for a safer and more user-friendly internet. The regulation sets the legal framework on consumer rights and transparency for online platforms, including companies such as Google, Facebook and Amazon. 

During negotiations, the Greens/EFA successfully pushed through strong rules to protect the fundamental rights of all internet users and sensitive personal data. We managed to take action against surveillance advertising and significantly limit illegal content such as hate speech on the internet. Very large online platforms, like YouTube and Instagram, will need to regularly assess and mitigate the risks their algorithms pose to society - to ensure respect for human dignity, the protection of minors, freedom of expression, public health and to combat violence against women. At the same time, independent researchers are given access to the platforms' data so that they can research how the use of algorithms is fuelling manipulation and disinformation and its effect on the public. 

Debate: Monday, 4 July
Vote: Tuesday, 5 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Alexandra Geese, Patrick Breyer, Kim Van Sparrentak, Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield

 

Digital Markets Act (DMA)

The European Parliament will debate and vote on the outcome of the trilogue negotiations on the Digital Markets Act, which will regulate digital platforms acting as gatekeepers and enable more fairness in the single market for both competing businesses and end-users. The proposal lays down harmonised rules to oversee the behaviour of digital platforms and ensure that practices by very few large digital companies do not negatively impact competition and innovation across the single market and limit consumer choice.

This is an opportunity to rebalance digital markets, stop the occurrence of harmful practices by big tech giants and set rules to ensure fairness and more choice for consumers for the future. The Greens/EFA Group calls on the Commission to deliver on the enforcement of the Digital Markets Acts and ensure that adequate human and financial resources are dedicated to it.  

Debate: Monday, 4 July
Vote: Tuesday, 5 July
Greens/EFA MEPs:  Marcel Kolaja, Rasmus Andresen, Kim Van Sparrentak,  Kira Peter-Hansen, Gwendoline Delbos-Corfield, David Cormand

 

Abortion Rights - debate and resolution 

The European Parliament will debate and vote on a resolution on the "US Supreme Court decision to overturn abortion rights in the United States and the need to safeguard abortion rights and women's health in the EU". With this resolution, the Greens/EFA strongly condemn the attacks on Sexual and Reproductive Healths and Rights (SRHR) and call for the strong protection of these rights both in the EU and globally. 

Criminalising, delaying or restricting access to safe and legal abortion constitutes a form of violence against women and girls. It does not reduce the number of abortions, but instead forces people, notably those lacking resources or information, to travel long distances or to resort to unsafe abortions, and makes them vulnerable to criminal investigation and prosecution.
The overturn of the constitutional right of abortion in the US will have a devastating impact for millions of people in the US. It will also embolden the anti-abortion movement in the world, and more concretely, in the European Union.

Debate: Monday, 4 July
Vote: Thursday, 7 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Terry Reintke, Alice Bah Kuhnke

 

Intersectionality report

On Wednesday, the European Parliament will vote on a report on Intersectional discrimination in the European Union. The report was initiated by the Greens/EFA Group. It underlines how different types of discrimination are interrelated and reinforce each other, and the fact that intersectional discrimination is widespread in the EU today. The report also highlights the situation of vulnerable groups that are often forgotten, such as women of color, transgender, Roma, Muslim women, and undocumented refugees. 

Vote: Wednesday, 6 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Alice Bah Kuhnke (EP rapporteur)

 

The 2021 Commission report on Kosovo

On Wednesday, the European Parliament will vote on the 2021 Commission Report on Kosovo. The report welcomes the increased stability in the country and the continued commitment of Kosovo to advance its European path. The report outlines Kosovo’s progress on the EU reform agenda, in particular on the country’s fight against corruption. It calls for stronger reform implementation in all areas of the EU reform agenda (rule of law, fundamental rights, the functioning of democratic institutions and public administration reform, energy, economic development and competitiveness). 

Viola von Cramon’s report also highlights the sensitive geopolitical situation following the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine and fully supports Kosovo’s application for Membership in the Council of Europe. The Greens/EFA call on the five remaining EU Member States to recognise Kosovo and for the Council to urgently adopt a visa-free regime for the citizens of Kosovo.

Debate: Tuesday, 5 July
Vote: Wednesday, 6 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Viola von Cramon-Taubadel (EP Rapporteur)

 

REFuel: Sustainable flights

On Thursday, the European Parliament will vote on a definition of Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAFs) expanded by the Transport Committee to include unsustainable feedstocks. This expanded definition is opposed by airlines, several member states and the Greens/EFA Group. 

Expanding the Commission's original definition without capping the use of unsustainable feedstocks will trigger a race to the bottom, in which the cheapest and least sustainable biofuels will prevail. Airlines are concerned about the reputational damage they could suffer from links to notorious biofuels like palm oil, and by the inherent instability of these fuel sources, especially in the context of the war in Ukraine and increasing food insecurity. The Greens/EFA are calling for the Parliament to support the Commission's fair and balanced definition of SAFs, as well as higher targets for truly sustainable aviation fuels. 

Debate: Thursday, 7 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Ciarán Cuffe, Jutta Paulus

 

National vetoes to undermine Global Tax Deal

On request of the Greens/EFA Group, the European Parliament will vote on a resolution as a response to Hungary vetoing the implementation of the corporate minimum tax rate during the ECOFIN meeting in June. The minimum tax rate comes from a global agreement reached in October and is designed to set a global standard for the largest multinationals to pay their share of tax in the jurisdictions they operate in and to take a first step towards fairness in the financial system. 
The proposal, which is something the Greens/EFA Group have long called for, would help cut down on corporate tax evasion and the race to the bottom. The power for individual governments such as Hungary to veto such vital files is outdated and the Council urgently needs to switch to majority voting on tax matters. During the plenary, MEPs will vote on a resolution calling on the Council to move beyond unanimity on tax matters.

Vote: Thursday, 7 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Kira Peter-Hansen, Claude Gruffat
More: Greens/EFA MEPs write to EU Commission on minimum tax

 

Windfall Tax

The profits of large corporations (particularly in the energy and food sectors) have skyrocketed in the context of the war in Ukraine, resulting in a full-on cost of living crisis at the expense of citizens. The Greens/EFA call on Member States and the Commission to establish a coordinated approach to implement an ambitious, retroactive, one-off windfall profit tax. Resulting revenues should be used as a direct subsidy to citizens most affected by the ongoing crisis. The windfall tax would be calculated by looking at the average profits of the last five years and comparing it with the profits made in fiscal year 2022.

Debate: Wednesday, 6 July
Greens/EFA MEPs: Rasmus Andresen, Claude Gruffat

 

MORE:

Financial activities of the European Investment Bank – annual report 2021
Greens/EFA MEP
: David Cormand (EP rapporteur)
Debate: Wednesday, 6 July
Vote: Thursday, 7 July

Council and Commission statements - Presentation of the programme of activities of the Czech Presidency
Debate: Wednesday, 6 July

Council and Commission statements - The UK government’s unilateral introduction of the Northern Ireland Protocol Bill and respect for international law
Debate: Wednesday, 6 July

LINKS:

  • Group co-Presidents, Ska Keller and Philippe Lamberts will hold the plenary session press briefing on Tuesday, at 10:40.
    Location: Daphne Caruana Galizia Press Room, Weiss N-1/201 or online via European Parliament website. Journalists can ask questions remotely, via Interactio.
  • Taxonomy cross-party press conference hosted by the Greens/EFA with MEPs from EPP, S&D, Renew, and The Left will be on Tuesday, 5 July at 9:00 in the Daphne Caruana Galizia Press Room, Weiss N-1/201 and online here.
  • The full plenary agenda for the week can be found on the Parliament website here.
  • The plenary sessions can be followed live here.

 

GREENS/EFA PRESS CONTACTS

Simon McKeagney (Head of Communication) 
Simon.mckeagney@europarl.europa.eu

Alex Johnson (EN press officer) 
Alex.Johnson@europarl.europa.eu

Pia Kohorst (DE press officer) 
pia.kohorst@europarl.europa.eu

Guendalina De Sario (FR press officer) 
guendalina.desario@europarl.europa.eu

Helena Hellström Gefwert (EN press assistant) 
helena.hellstrom@europarl.europa.eu

Mia Müller (DE press assistant) 
Mirjam.Muller@europarl.europa.eu

Valentina Chiarini (FR press assistant)
valentina.chiarini@europarl.europa.eu

Valentina Servera Clavell (EFA Communications officer)
Valentina.ServeraClavell@europarl.europa.eu

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