Issue No.10 Autumn
(November 2005)


ENS News

ENS President's Contribution

Informing the Public

ENS Events

Etrap 2005

ENC 2005

PIME 2006

Topnux 2006

RRFM 2006

Topseal 2006

Topfuel 2006

Member Societies & Corporate Members

Hurricanes Give a Boost to Hydrogen Economy

Finland's Olkiluoto 3

YGN Report

10th Anniversary of German YG

European Institutions

European Energy Policy

ENS World News

Nuclear frontline of climate change battle

Winning the battle

ENS Members

Links to ENS Member Societies

Links to ENS Corporate Members

Editorial staff

ETRAP 2005

ETRAP 2005
23-25 November 2005 in Brussels


RRFM 2006RRFM 2006

RRFM 2006
30 April - 3 May 2006 in Sofia, Bulgaria










Winning the battle against global climate change

On 11 October 2005, the European Parliament’s Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) adopted Anders Wijkman's (EPP-ED, Sweden) own-initiative Draft Report on the Commission's February 2005 Communication Winning the Battle Against Global Climate Change. The February Communication presents the European Commission’s vision of the EU's climate change policy for the post-2012 period.

Unfortunately, a rather anti-nuclear compromise amendment was tabled at the last minute by Anders Wijkman, Gyula Hegyi, Rebecca Harms, Caroline Lucas, Kartika Tamara Liotard, Roberto Musacchio and Johannes Blokland. The amendment was voted through. Oddly enough, the compromise amendment was supported by the EPP-ED (European Conservative Group) - at least according to their voting list.

The amendment reads:

“….recognises that delayed action will increase the risk of adverse environmental effects and greater costs; further maintains that reducing global emissions must not lead to other threats; reiterates its opinion that CDM/JI (clean development mechanism/joint implementation) or similar credits must continue to exclude nuclear activities."

Between when the Draft Report that was adopted by the Parliament’s ENVI Committee and the release of this edition of the FLASH, FORATOM’s Secretariat has been working to remove the anti-nuclear reference. There are two options for getting a new amendment put forward at the Parliament’s Plenary Session, either:

  1. Lobby for a political party to put forward an amendment deleting the third sentence "reiterates its opinion that CDM/JI or similar credits must continue to exclude nuclear activities,"


  2. Lobby for at least 32 MEPs – regardless of their political affiliation - to co-sign an amendment deleting the third sentence. However, without the political backing by a major party, such as the EPP-ED, the chances of convincing the majority of the remaining 700 MEPs is rather unlikely.

Under the first option, the only political party likely to support such an amendment would be the EPP-ED party itself. In view of the fact that the EPP-ED had originally supported the amendment at the environment committee vote stage, and bearing in mind that the Draft Report’s Rapporteur, Anders Wijkman, is himself an EPP-ED Member and one of the anti-nuclear amendment’s co-authors, the likelihood that the EPP-ED would "force" Anders Wijkman to change his position on this amendment is practically zero. The only way the EPP-ED would support removing the anti-nuclear amendment would be if Anders Wijkman himself were to do so. The chances of that happening are very remote.

The second option is no easy task either, but it’s not impossible. Over the past two weeks, FORATOM’s Secretariat successfully obtained the 32 MEP signatures needed to table an amendment at the upcoming November Plenary Session. In fact, it secured over 50 MEP signatures during a two-day visit to Strasbourg for the Parliament's October Plenary Session – with the lobbying support of some Brussels-based nuclear representatives.

Getting the 32 MEP signatures was the easy part of the process. A Motion for a Resolution (non-binding) on the Commission’s Communication will be voted upon at the Parliament’s next Plenary Session, on 16 November. The more difficult part, however, is getting a majority of the 732 MEPs to support the amendment during the vote.

After speaking to key senior MEPs from the EPP-ED party, it became clear that the amendment’s best chance of succeeding was if the EPP-ED party was to allow a "free vote" on this particular amendment. This means, EPP-ED Members would be free to vote whichever way they wanted without having to follow official party lines. A meeting of the EPP-ED will be held on 9 November to prepare their voting positions for the following Plenary Session. In answer to a request from FORATOM’s Secretariat, key EPP-ED MEPs will insist upon a free vote on the amendment. The Secretariat will also see if the same procedure could be adopted by the PSE (the socialist group).

Furthermore, FORATOM’s Secretariat will continue to urge MEPs to support this amendment by, for example, urging them to speak to their colleagues, right up until the vote takes place in November. The Secretariat will also help organize meetings with key MEPs to discuss the matter further. Whatever the outcome, everything possible will have been done to get the amendment accepted. The results of the vote will be published in the December edition of the FLASH.

For a more detailed look at the Draft Report check the following web link.

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