What's coming up in Parliament
Strasbourg Flash - Plenary session 5-8 February 2018
Transnational lists: an opportunity to transform European democracy
Debate and vote on Wednesday
MEPs will vote on a report on the composition of the European Parliament, including proposals to create transnational lists. Giving European citizens the opportunity to elect candidates who represent them beyond national boundaries is a chance to foster a genuinely pan European political debate. Transnational lists would push all European political forces to present comprehensive and consistent programmes instead of running with totally contradictory proposals that are split across different countries or regions.
Next steps: After the adoption of its proposal by Parliament, the Council should agree its position by unanimity. This will return to the Parliament to give its consent.
Emissions Trading System: modest improvements but far short of Paris agreement
Debate Monday, vote Tuesday
MEPs vote on the outcome of trilogue negotiations on the Emissions Trading System, the EU’s landmark policy in the fight against climate change. The final legislation will fall short of the complete overhaul that is needed if the EU is to deliver on its Paris climate agreement targets. However, we are pleased to have helped secure the inclusion of a mechanism to partially address the excessive surplus of allocations, which has been keeping prices far too low. Excess allowances will now be passed to a reserve to keep them out of market circulation. This is a significant safeguard for the environmental integrity of future EU climate targets.
Next steps: the revised system will take effect in 2021.
Glyphosate: New committee to look at authorisation process for pesticides
Following the approval of the political group presidents in January, the parliament is expected to vote to create a special committee to look at authorisation procedure for pesticides. Through this committee, the Green/EFA group will seek to analyse the failings in the process that led to the renewal of the authorisation of glyphosate. The protection of public health and our environment must take precedence and this requires total independence of scientific work.
Next steps: Membership of the committee will be voted for on Thursday. The Greens/EFA group will have two members and two substitutes. The constituent meeting is expected in March 2018. The committee is expected to meet for one year.
Geoblocking: consumers will still face “this video is not available in your country”
Debate on Monday, vote on Tuesday
The outcome of the geoblocking trilogue was a disappointment, with many of the good elements of the European Parliament's position removed. The regulation completely excludes videos, music, ebooks and computer game downloads/streaming, the very areas where people most often run into "not available in your country" errors. As such, it falls far short of ending geoblocking. On the plus side, e-commerce websites will no longer be allowed to forcibly redirect people to a particular national site and prices can't be different depending on which country someone orders from.
Special committee on tax: We must ensure progress on tax justice is not lost
Decision in Conference of Presidents on Thursday
The political group presidents are due to approve the establishment of a special committee on tax during Thursday’s Conference of Presidents. There is a clearly unfinished work to do when it comes to tax justice. We need to investigate new tax scandals - such as the Paradise Papers - and ensure that European Parliament’s recommendations and findings from the inquiry on the Panama Papers (PANA) are being implemented by the European Commission and the Member States.
Next steps: provided the presidents approve, there will then be a plenary vote during the mini-session in Brussels (28 February to 1 March). The committee is expected to run from March until the end of the current mandate.
Visit of Croatian Prime Minister on the Future of Europe
Debate on Tuesday
The parliament continues its series of debates with invited European leaders on the Future of Europe with Prime Minister of Croatia, Andrej Plenković. Greens/EFA co-president Ska Keller will raise questions regarding social inequality, the rights of refugees and Croatia’s failure to ratify the Istanbul Convention.
Romania: Commission must play active role in supporting rule of law
Debate on Wednesday
The parliament will hear Council and Commission statements on threats to the rule of law by the Romanian justice system reform. In December, the Greens/EFA group wrote to Commission Vice-President Frans Timmermans expressing concern about the proposed changes to the justice system in Romania.
More info: read our letter to Vice-President Timmermans
Co-presidents press briefing
Tuesday 6 February – 10.30-10.50, EP press room LOW N -1/201
Press briefing with Greens/EFA co-presidents Ska Keller and Philippe Lamberts on the key issues of the session for the Greens/EFA group. Also live-streamed on our website.