Blog Posts

October 14th, 2016

Get In With the Global Frackdown: Send a Postcard to Parliament

Thank you for your interest, no further action on this issue is needed. Unfortunately, the report was approved on 25 October by 66% of MEPs.

By Frida Kieninger

foodandwatereuropeoct25votenolngFor the Global Frackdown of 2016, Food & Water Europe offers people around the globe the chance to send postcards to Members of the European Parliament with a clear message: “NO liquefied natural gas (LNG)”.

On October 25, the plenary of the EU-Parliament will vote on the report “on the EU strategy for liquefied natural gas and gas storage.” It will most likely call for a significant expansion of LNG infrastructure in Europe and for a reduction of all barriers to global trade in LNG.

We don’t want imported fracked gas in Europe and call for a rejection of the report if it does not clearly recognise the dangers of natural gas, particularly obtained by fracking, for communities, the environment and the climate.

Read the full article…

October 12th, 2016

Hitting The Wall: How European Institutions Insist On Privatizing Greek Water

By David Sánchez

foodwatereuropegreekwaterrightsBrexit was a real shock here in Brussels. For the first time, a member state decided to leave the club. It was really tempting to expect a reaction, a debate about the role of EU policies in this collective failure. But this European Union captured by big companies and ruled by a dogmatic neoliberal elite keeps doing business as usual. What happened in the last few weeks in Greece was another brutal example.

Read the full article…

October 3rd, 2016

You Can NOT Frack Here

By Andy Gheorghiu

Food & Water Europe will organise the Global Frackdown.

Returning October 2016
Global Frackdown

The Global Frackdown 2016, an international day of action to challenge the oil and gas industry and ban fracking worldwide, will take place on October 15, 2016. Around the world, for the fifth year running, participants will be shouting “Ni ici, ni ailleurs” — “not here or anywhere!” — in support of a ban on fracking.

The joint demands are simple and mirror the need for critical change on our planet: Read the full article…

August 11th, 2016

Reversing The Tide: Spain Moves Into Water Remunicipalization

By David Sánchez

Food and Water Europe El Agua No Es NegocioJust one year ago we were arguing about how Spain was still resisting the last wave of water privatization, as a result of austerity policies and debt, seasoned with corruption scandals.

But as a result of the local and regional elections a year ago, the tide changed. As a reaction to the long-term crisis, attacks to public services and corruption in traditional parties, many citizen movements organized to run for the elections, with great success in Madrid, Barcelona, Zaragoza, Ferrol, Santiago, Cádiz, Coruña and Valencia, among others.

One of the key achievements of those movements was to introduce in the public sphere the debate on how to manage public services, like water. By the end of 2015, 57 percent of the population in Spain received their tap water from a private operator. One of the most worrying consequences is that more than 500,000 families receive water cut off warnings every year, according to data from the Spanish public water companies association.

Read the full article…

July 20th, 2016

About the Nonsense of Going for US LNG (Part II)

By Frida Kieninger

FoodwaterEuropeFridaKieningerTruthTelling

In part II of my LNG blog, I will give a deeper insight into the blatant irrationality of shipping US liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe while calling it an opportunity for energy security, sustainability and flexibility.

I already pointed out the myths around the hype concerning LNG imports to Europe. I explained how LNG is no better and maybe worse for the climate than using coal or oil, and how billions spent for building LNG import infrastructure would be wasted trying to out-bluster Russia, while switching to gas imports from countries with their own questionable records and futures. I pointed out that only around a quarter of the EU’s LNG terminals are currently used, but that the Commission, with a long history of relying on overestimations of gas demand, plans to build more LNG infrastructure.

Read the full article…

July 18th, 2016

About the Nonsense of the EU’s LNG Import Plans (Part I)

By Frida Kieninger

FoodandwaterEuropeFridaKieningerTruthTellingThe European Union is one of the biggest importers of fossil fuels in the world and the second largest importer of natural gas. Norway and Russia are currently the most important exporters of natural gas to the EU. Beyond the political and economic pitfalls of such dependence, climate science is clear that we must keep the vast majority of fossil fuels in the ground. The European Commission, however, is holding up liquefied natural gas (LNG) as the answer to the question of how Europe will meet its energy needs. This is short-sighted and wrong.

LNG is super-cooled natural gas, condensed to 1/600th of its volume so that larger amounts can be transported and stored. The “EU strategy for liquefied natural gas and gas storage” was presented by the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, and it is quite disturbing.

I decided to examine more closely their mantra of “security of supply”, “flexibility”, “diversification of supply”, “competition” and “sustainability”, and sure enough, if you look at the truth behind the much-praised LNG imports, the strategy unravels. Unfortunately, the majority of Members of the EU Parliament seem to have a largely uncritical stance towards LNG, happily repeating the Commission’s claims.

Read the full article…

July 7th, 2016

Spit It Out – ExxonMobil!

By Frida Kieninger

HoldExxonMobileResponsibleSignthePetitionIn the 1950s, the tobacco industry made us believe that smoking “[r]enews and restores bodily energy” and one particular brand’s ads told us “[n]o other cigarette approaches such a degree of health protection and taste satisfaction”. Claims like this would be impossible nowadays, thanks to a successful fight against the cigarette lobby’s misleading campaigns.

But what about statements by the oil and gas industry, calling natural gas a “clean fossil fuel”? We still have a way to go until everyone immediately sees how obviously wrong this statement is, thanks to the continued efforts of oil and gas giants to hide the truth from the concerned public. The fossil fuel industry gave more than $30 million to climate denier think tanks and politicians, telling us that their activities do not pose a threat for the global climate. For years they have earned billions by contributing significantly to global warming while not taking any responsibility for the damage to our environment, economy and society.

Read the full article…

June 28th, 2016

Assessment of the Impacts of TTIP on Health, Environment and Human Rights

By Frida Kieninger

Say no to TTIPWhen negotiating major trade agreements, the European Commission seeks formal input about the impact of these agreements on the economy, human rights and the environment. It does so by commissioning a Sustainability Impact Assessment. For the ongoing negotiations about the EU-US trade deal, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), they entrusted Ecorys with this task. The consulting company just recently published its draft Interim Technical Report on the Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA).

We had a closer look at this report and there are several things in it that we are quite concerned about.

Read the full article…

June 20th, 2016

Strong European Fracking Opposition Produces Further Successes

By Andy Gheorghiu

Food & Water Europe You Can't Frack HereSome folks might still think that the people can’t really change politics or don’t really have an impact on the decisions of politicians and companies. I don’t! Not because it is easy to work for a change but because it is hard. Not because I like to negate the reality of the political and economical interlinkage but because I know that the people always have the ultimate power … if they were only willing to exercise their power more frequently.

Well, I can tell you that the European fracktivists did exercise their power to change more than once. And they are still willing to do it over and over again.

Yes, our fracking struggle isn’t over yet and it’s still a rocky road to climb until we reach the mountain top of a frack-free globe. But the latest good news from Europe again shows that it’s definitely worth the trouble.

Read the full article…

May 16th, 2016

You Said It: Factory Farms Have Got To Go

By Eve Mitchell

ChristinafromOrkneyonFishFarmingFoodandWaterEuropeI asked for it, and I got it. Lucky me!

I asked people all over the UK what they think about factory farming. From Orkney to the Isle of Wight, you’ve got stories. Some of them are sad, and some of them are wise, but all of them show why we need to make sure the last factory farm to get planning permission really was the last factory farm.

Too cruel

We’re known the world over as a nation of animal lovers, and boy did you tell me that rules out meat factories. Christina from Orkney tells it like it is: “Factory farming is cruel; really cruel.”

Eva from Cambridge knows it’s also about respect for the animals. She says, “Their lives are very short compared with the lives of their wild counterparts. If we take their lives at an early age, the least we can do is give them a good life while it lasts.”

Read the full article…

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