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A blog by Ciarán Cuffe, Greens/EFA MEP

Increasing the energy efficiency of buildings and the renovation rate in Europe is a win-win. It’s a chance to tackle poverty, create jobs, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, says Ciarán Cuffe, Greens/EFA MEP and rapporteur on the European Parliament’s report: ‘Maximising the energy efficiency of the EU Building stock’.

Fruits and vegetables in a wooden box/ CC0 Shelley Pauls
Fruits and vegetables in a wooden box/ CC0 Shelley Pauls

Farm to fork strategy

Agriculture is both hugely responsible and affected by climate change. The food we eat, how it’s made and where it comes from plays an important role in the system change that we are fighting for, since our global food system accounts for nearly one third of global greenhouse gas emissions.

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Greens/EFA take on the plenary session

14-18 September

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the Just Transition Fund, arms exports, the state of the Union, global data collection system for ship fuel oil consumption data, the situation in Moria refugee camp, the situation in Poland and LGBTI rights, strategic approach to pharmaceuticals in the environment, the situation in Belarus, the EU Roma Strategy, and maximising the energy efficiency potential of the EU building stock.

Picture illustrating farm to fork

Radical transformation of our agricultural system needed, not GMOs

A Greens/EFA perspective on genome editing in agriculture

Biodiversity and ecosystems are under extreme threat, with around one million species facing extinction. To avert the worst consequences of runaway climate change, urgent action needs to be taken now.In order to respond to these unprecedented and closely interlinked crises, our food and agricultural systems need to be rapidly transformed. High input, industrial farming based on monocultures and factory farming must be replaced by high biodiversity, locally adapted food production systems, ones which produce healthy food while respecting animal welfare and the environment.

slash and burn amazon
Slash and burn amazon ©Matt Zimmerman (CC BY 2.0)

The Mercosur Trade Agreement: A lose-lose deal

When you go to the official website of the EU-Mercosur agreement, the first sentence you see is: ‘A union of countries working as one to secure the well-being of their people’. This is outrageous when you realise that this agreement will emphasize deforestation, biodiversity loss, land grabbing, violation of human rights and adding to this, that in Europe our farmers will have to face unfair competition, that will destroy local markets. This agreement is a gift to multinationals!

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Housing rights before market interests, for a socially just recovery

Our housing system is not working for people. Across Europe, from Paris to Warsaw, Dublin to Athens, an increasing number of people in the EU are struggling to afford the rising costs of housing. Greens/EFA MEP Kim van Sparrentak is leading a report in the European Parliament to tackle the housing crisis.

Mobile Phone
©lina-yatsen

MEPs denounce reports of political espionage

EFA MEP calls for investigation into phone hacking reports

EFA MEP Diana Riba (ERC) has submitted a written question to the European Commission which denounces the revelations of political espionage against leading Catalan politicians, published this week by the Guardian and El ...

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Plenary session debriefing

8-10 July

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the programme of the German Presidency, prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing, EU Hydrogen Strategy, chemicals strategy for sustainability, boosting Roma inclusion process in Europe, state of play Rule of Law in Member States,...

Power Grids
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A new European energy infrastructure policy in line with the climate emergency

A blog by Marie Toussaint

During this week’s plenary session, Members of the European Parliament will adopt a resolution setting out the Parliament’s views on the upcoming revision of the trans-European energy infrastructure Regulation (TEN-E Regulation). The current law sets out the process and criteria to select cross-border electricity, gas and oil infrastructure projects of European interest. For the upcoming revision due in December this year, the Greens/EFA group is asking to end EU support for fossil fuel projects, such as gas pipelines. In addition, this year the European Commission should adopt transitional guidance on how to spend EU funds until the revised law enters into force. This is to ensure that only projects in line with the Paris Agreement are supported.

People standing under solar panels/science-in-hd
People standing under solar panels/science-in-hd

Green hydrogen & renewables

The EU should take the lead now!

On Wednesday 8 July 2020, the European Commission presented its so-called “Hydrogen Strategy”. Our MEPs Henrike Hahn and Damien Carême, co-chairs of Greens/EFA's Green Industrial Policy Campaign look at why hydrogen will be a key energy source to achieve carbon neutrality by 2040. But not any type of hydrogen: green hydrogen only!

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Plenary Flash - July session

Greens/EFA priorities 8-10 July 2020

This week, the Parliament will debate on the programme of the German Presidency of the EU with Chancellor Merkel, on prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing, EU hydrogen strategy, Roma inclusion,... Discover all the other major topics on the agenda and the Greens/EFA priority issues

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KEY DEMANDS FOR THE GERMAN COUNCIL PRESIDENCY 2020

Germany takes over the presidency of the EU Council. This comes at a crucial time in the history of the European Union, faced with many unprecedented challenges at once. The EU Green Deal must lead the way out of this crisis. For the climate. For jobs. For recovery.

Fridays for Future demonstration European Council/Anuna De Wever/Adélaïde Charlier
Fridays for Future demonstration European Council/Anuna De Wever/Adélaïde Charlier

The EU recovery plan

In our previous blog, “Financing the green deal,” we have already briefly discussed the EU Recovery Plan. This plan was proposed by the European Commission to define the procedure of recovery in Europe after the COVID crisis. While it is mainly focused on rebuilding the economy, a lot of voices in and outside of the European institutions have expressed that this could be a very important moment for climate. While the world was in lockdown and our economy collapsed, huge amounts of CO2 emissions were continuously released.

Hong Kong Island Skyline
@bady qb
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No feel-good summit

EU-China Summit

When Commission President von der Leyen and Council President Michel meet China's Prime Minister Li Keqiang today for an electronic version of the traditional EU-China Summit, there is only one question: feel-good summit, yes or no?

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© European Union 2015 - Source EP

A Greens/EFA take on the plenary week

Plenary week, 17-19 June 2020

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included anti-racism protests following the death of George Floyd, Hong Kong, sustainable investment/taxonomy, tax sub-committee, the Disability Strategy, the animal transport inquiry committee, investigation against the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic on the misuse of EU funds and potential conflicts of interest, the Future of Europe, recovery/MFF, land grabbing and deforestation in the Amazonas, Brexit, Eastern Partnership and European Council.

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Photo European Parliament - Architecte : Association des architectes du CIC : Vanden Bossche sprl, C.R.V. s.a., CDG sprl, Studiegroep D. Bontinck

Flash - Plenary session

Greens/EFA Priorities 17-19 June 2020

During this week plenary session, the Parliament will debate and vote on the anti-racism protests following the death of George Floyd, Sustainable Investment/Taxonomy, Disability Strategy, the Future of Europe... Discover the other major topics on the agenda and the Greens/EFA priority issues

Green Growth
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Financing the green deal

As you know the commission proposed a pact called the European Green Deal, that will be the roadmap for Europe to tackle climate change and become carbon neutral in 2050. In our previous blogs we have explained what this pact is, and what it is not. In this blog, we would like to address an important aspect that is missing: MONEY. In the world we live in today, to achieve the goals that the EU has set, we need a good budget.

orange flowers © by Henry Be
orange flowers © Henry Be

Nature must be at the heart of the post-Covid-19 recovery

A blog by MEPs Anna Deparnay-Grunenberg and Grace O’Sullivan

Biodiversity is all around us. Even for those restricted to home in these trying and sad times, a cursory look around shows a world teeming with life.

Hand holding grain © Bart Sadowski
Hand holding grain © Bart Sadowski

Common Agricultural Policy transitional regulation mandate

Quote from Bronis Ropé MEP

Today, the majority of MEPs voted in favour of the negotiating mandate for the transitional regulation of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and to postpone a more sustainable agricultural policy for another two years.

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© European Union 2015 - Source EP

A Greens/EFA debriefing of the plenary week

Plenary week, 13-15 May 2020

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the Recovery and Transformation Plan & Multiannual Financial Framework, Discharge 2018 procedure, emergency legislation in Hungary and its impact on the rule of law and fundamental rights, transitional CAP mandate vote and a debate on COVID-19 vaccines.

Picture of the Hemicycle in Brussels
Photo European Parliament - Architecte : Association des architectes du CIC : Vanden Bossche sprl, C.R.V. s.a., CDG sprl, Studiegroep D. Bontinck

Plenary Flash

Greens/EFA priorities, 13 – 15 May 2020

During this week plenary session, the Parliament will debate and vote on the Recovery Plan & Multiannual Financial Framework. Discover the other major topics on the agenda and the Greens/EFA priority issues

COVID-19
© CC0 Martin Sanchez.jpg

Will COVID-19 destroy or empower the European Green Deal?

This new crisis might be a make it or break it moment, and it is crucial we don’t return to business as usual afterwards. Let’s not forget that going back to normal is going back to a climate emergency.

Solidarity rainbows during corona in leeds_Uk
Solidarity rainbows during corona in leeds_Uk @dan burton
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What world do we want to return to?

Greens/EFA Recovery and Resilience Plan

More than ever, people in Europe and everywhere understand that with solidarity and cooperation we can overcome the COVID-19 crisis. Together, we can make another European and global future, one that is more socially, economically and environmentally resilient. Read our plan

Picture illustrating farm to fork

The COVID-19 crisis reveals the many fissures of the EU food system and shows us the way out

As COVID-19 hits the EU agri-food sector hard, it also reveals its main shortcomings. Far from shying away from the issues, we should use this occasion to reshape the EU food and farming system to the benefit of farmers, consumers and their shared environment, with the help of the future Farm to Fork strategy, and, hopefully a refounded Common Agriculture Policy.

Le coronavirus menace le monde
©Alexandra_Koch

All about the european green deal

The European Green Deal is a pact that was launched this year by the European Commission. It aims to make Europe the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050. This all sounds good on paper, but will it be enough?

European flag 530x390
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Now Europe, now Eurobonds

In the last days, we have witnessed an inexplicable European paralysis to address the COVID-19 crisis. It has taken too long to see patients crossing borders to be treated in neighbouring countries, or material circulating from one country to another. Fortunately, it seems that solidarity within Europe is growing every day, and we are finally reacting on the health-care front.

Kosovo
Babak Fakhamzadeh (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Kosovo: Vote of no confidence amid Corona crisis

Quote from Viola von Cramon-Taubadel MEP

The current political turmoil in Kosovo and the Corona pandemic should not be used to any individual politician's advantage. Kosovo needs a stable government that can lead its citizens through these times of uncertainty and crisis.

Budapest - Hungary © Jaap Hart
© Jaap Hart

Hungary/Corona crisis: Draft bill on modifying criminal code risks democratic standards

Quote Gwendoline Deblos-Corfield MEP

Today, the Hungarian Parliament will debate passing a motion that would allow the government to rule by decree until the end of the Corona virus crisis. Under the proposals, any law could be suspended or overridden as long as the emergency continues, and no elections including municipal, by-elections or referenda will be allowed until the government declares the emergency over.

Picture of migrants in Greece
Christopher Jahn/IFRC (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Evacuate vulnerable asylum seekers from Greek islands

Corona virus

Members of the European Parliament are calling on the crisis team of the European Commission to make an emergency plan to protect vulnerable asylum seekers against Covid-19. On the Greek islands are now more than 42.000 asylum seekers, while camps were supposed to house 6.000 people

Picture of climate activists

All about the EU climate law

A blog from two young climate activists

The European Green Deal is a pact that was launched by the President of the Commission, Ursula von der Leyen. And the climate law is consequently one of the most important parts of the green deal.

Picture of the plenary chamber in Brussels
Photo European Parliament - Architecte : Association des architectes du CIC : Vanden Bossche sprl, C.R.V. s.a., CDG sprl, Studiegroep D. Bontinck

Plenary flash

Greens/EFA priorities, 9 - 12 March 2020

This week the Parliament will meet in Brussels. Discover the Greens/EFA priority issues on the agenda

Catalonia Protest
Sasha Popovic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Spain accused of ‘criminalising dissent’

EFA MEPs supporting Catalan academics

Spanish authorities have been accused of ‘criminalising dissent’ after it emerged that supporters of Catalan self-determination are facing legal action and other measures simply for supporting a peaceful refe...

Picture We are ready. Why aren't you ? Petition on climate law
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We are ready. Why aren't you ?

Sign the petition to EU Ministers of Environment

This year must be the year we save the climate. At the UN Climate Summit in November in Glasgow we need world leaders to take concrete steps to make the Paris Climate Agreement goals a reality. Unless the EU announces plans to dramatically increase its climate goals before this summer, other world leaders will not budge.

Andrej Babiš
Andrej Babiš © Martin Strachoň (CC BY-SA 4.0)

MEPs' fact-finding mission to Czech Republic on conflicts of interest - quote from Daniel Freund MEP

Czech Republic

Today, a European Parliament fact-finding mission on conflicts of interest in the Czech Republic with Members of the Budgetary Control Committee has just ended. Daniel Freund MEP, Greens/EFA Member of the Budgetary Control Committee who was part of the fact-finding mission on conflicts of interest in the Czech Republic, comments:

Euro banknotes © Markus Spiske
Euro banknotes © Markus Spiske
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We need a better EU budget plan

Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF)

President Michel's disappointing budget proposal lacks ambition. The EU needs a strong and modern budget to fight climate change and inequalities.

European Parliament Building Strasbourg ©Cquim
European Parliament Building Strasbourg ©Cquim

A Greens/EFA take on the plenary week

Plenary week, 10-14 February 2020

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the future EU/UK relationship, conclusion of the EU - Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, objection to the energy projects ‘PCI List’, humanitarian situation of refugees at EU external borders, automated decision-making processes, the illegal trade in companion animals in the EU, and the Gender Equality Strategy.

Hemicycle European Parliament Strasbourg
European Union

A look on the plenary week

Greens/EFA priorities - session 10-13 February 2020

A look ahead to the plenary session in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and the Greens/EFA priority issues on the agenda

© 2020 EU-EP/DH

Focus on Europe’s minorities, national communities and languages

EFA MEPs support new European Parliament Intergroup

A new group has been set up in the European parliament that will be a focal point for discussion on the issues facing Europe’s minorities, national communities and languages. Europe’s rich linguistic, nati...

Board in train station
Board in train station
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Reintroduce the Paris-Brussels-Berlin night train route by 2022!

Sign our petition

Until 2014, it was possible to travel between Paris and Berlin thanks to a night train operated by the SNCF and the Deutsche Bahn. According to the operators, this line has been closed for budgetary reasons. Connecting three major European capitals (Berlin-Brussels-Paris) by night train is essential in times of climate emergency!

We will leave a light on - action Brexit
We will leave a light on - action Brexit Greens/EFA

We will leave a light on

Brexit

This is a sad week for Europe, but this is not the end of our story. As our former MEP AlynSmith once said: "I am not asking you to solve our domestic discussions. I am asking you to leave a light on so we can find our way home". We will

A Greens/EFA take on the plenary week

13-17 January 2020

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the European Green Deal, the Sustainable Investment Plan, Just Transition Fund, Roadmap on Social Europe, the Council hearings on the rule of Law in Hungary and Poland, Czech PM Andrej Babiš' conflicts of interest, Convention on biodiversity, ...

Hemicycle European Parliament Strasbourg
European Union

This week in the European Parliament

Greens/EFA priorities - plenary session 13-17 January 2020

A look ahead to the plenary session in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and the Greens/EFA priority issues on the agenda

strasbourg building ep
© European Union 2015 - Source EP

Greens/EFA Debriefing

Plenary week, 16-19 December 2019

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the rule of law in Malta, conflict of interest and corruption, situation of the Uyghur in China, EU pollinators initiative, animal welfare, EU-Mercosur and European Green Deal, EU Ombudsperson, ...

finland eu council logo
finland eu council logo

Greens/EFA call on Croatia and Germany to keep EU Council ambition high in 2020

Closing of the Finnish Presidency

On 31 December 2019, Finland’s EU Council presidency draws to a close. Just before the beginning of Finland’s presidency term, the country elected a new five-party centre left coalition government, which immediately adopted well regarded climate goals. Showing leadership on ambitious climate action at the national level set high expectations for Finland to demand ambitious climate decisions also at the EU level.

Hemicycle European Parliament Strasbourg
European Union

What's coming up this week

Greens/EFA priorities - plenary session 16-19 December 2019

A look ahead to the plenary session in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and the Greens/EFA priority issues on the agenda

The EU is not a cash machine for oligarchs and politicians

Greens/EFA Proposals to end fraud in farm subsidies

On the occasion of the International Day Against Corruption, the Greens/EFA Group is publishing a series of recommendations on how to end the abuse of EU farm subsidies. Farm subsidies make up the biggest portion of EU spending and are an indispensable measure to protect European farmers, ensure food sovereignty, and promote healthy and sustainable food production in Europe. However, the lack of controls on the way EU funding is disbursed by European governments means that in some cases, unscrupulous politicians and people in positions of power are able to abuse the EU funding system for their own personal gain.

EuropeanClimateLaw_Logo_Sun_website.jpg
European Climate Law Logo
en | de | fr

Why we need a European climate law

A Climate emergency needs climate solutions

On 28 November 2019 the European Parliament declared the climate emergency. This call must now be followed by ambitious concrete action. The Greens/EFA group call for an ambitious and rapid implementation of the European climate law and listed a series of short and medium term actions to address the emergency we are in.

strasbourg building ep
© European Union 2015 - Source EP

Greens/EFA Debriefing

Plenary week, 25-28 November 2019

Greens/EFA priorities for the plenary week included the votes on climate emergency and the Climate Summit in Madrid (COP25), the new European Commission, the votes on the 2020 Budget, public country-by-country reporting, combatting gender-based violence, and an EP Mission to Malta following recent revelations around the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia.

leKids at lesbos refugee camp
leKids at lesbos refugee camp || Fotomovimiento (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
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Time to put an end to the humanitarian crisis on the Greek islands

Time to take responsibility

At the next European Council on 2-3 December, our government leaders have the opportunity to solve a humanitarian crisis, which has long reached its critical limit. This is why we have sent them a letter calling them to immediately improve the living conditions and relocate asylum seekers to other member states. You can also take action.

Refugee Camp Lebanon
Worldbank (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
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European Parliament calls for the immediate return of the children of Jihadist fighters

Quote from Saskia Bricmont MEP

By calling for the repatriation of children and a coordinated European response, the European Parliament is taking responsibility and responding to Member States' inaction.

Hemicycle European Parliament Strasbourg
European Union

What's coming up this week

Greens/EFA priorities - plenary session 25-29 November 2019

A look ahead to the plenary session in the European Parliament in Strasbourg and the Greens/EFA priority issues on the agenda