New figures released today by the US Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) show that if Europe does not act, its imports of tar sands, one of the dirtiest fossil fuels, would likely skyrocket from about 4,000 barrels per day (bpd) in 2012 to over 700,000 bpd in 2020 . The resulting emissions increase in transport would be the equivalent of adding six million cars to Europe's roads.
Europe is opening its doors to dirty and dangerous unconventional fossil fuels, Friends of the Earth Europe and Food & Water Europe said today. The warning comes as the European Commission publishes a framework to guide member states on how to regulate shale gas which fails to provide mandatory protection for Europe's citizens against the environmental and health risks of fracking.
EU plans to tackle climate change by the year 2030, announced in Brussels today, have been heavily criticized by environment group Friends of the Earth Europe.
The policies proposed by the European Commission disregard climate science which makes it clear the need to drastically cut emissions to avoid catastrophic levels of global warming is getting more urgent all the time.
Antoine Simon and David Heller from Friends of the Earth Europe, travelled to the village of Pungeşti in Romania this weekend to observe and document the village's resistance to shale gas. The community's stand against Chevron has become one of the front lines of the struggle against dirty energy in Europe.
"Commission President Barroso needs to implement the Fuel Quality Directive now to protect our climate and keep the dirtiest fuels out of Europe."
That was the message activists from Friends of the Earth Europe took to the headquarters of the European Commission in Brussels today. The campaigners called on President Barroso to finally implement this crucial piece of European climate legislation that has been delayed by more than three years already.
As part of Global Frackdown Day, events were held in over 25 countries this weekend, demanding that national governments ban fracking and increase support for a clean energy future. The activities took place in both communities who have already suffered from unconventional fossil fuel developments and in those areas where fracking is being proposed.
Today marks the beginning of a month of worldwide public protest and action to say no to dirty energy, and to support clean, renewable alternatives.
As part of the 'Reclaim Power' month, Friends of the Earth Europe will construct a people's windmill outside the European Parliament in Brussels on 7th November to show that people should be at the centre of renewable energy.
European politicians recognised the specific environmental, health and social impacts of fracking today, according to Friends of the Earth Europe. For the first time, and as a result of a vote in the European Parliament today, some of the dangers of unconventional fossil fuels like shale gas are now specifically reflected in environmental and health safeguards applicable to all fossil fuels. However, the organisation warns that this does not close the door on dirty and dangerous unconventional fossil fuels.
Today twenty-one Nobel Prize winners backed calls from Friends of the Earth Europe for the immediate implementation of the EU Fuel Quality Directive.
The Nobel laureates sent a letter to European Commission President José Manuel Barroso and European Union environment ministers calling for stronger action to help tackle climate change by accurately labelling transport fuels according their climate impacts.
As the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development today closes the public consultation period on its upcoming energy strategy, a coalition of the largest ten European environmental organisations, the Green 10, is calling on the bank to phase out fossil fuels from its future lending, beginning with coal, and to rule out lending to risky energy sources, such as nuclear and shale gas.