The European Union’s proposal for a chapter on energy and raw materials in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) agreement was leaked on Monday, just as the fourteenth round of talks between the EU and US got underway in Brussels.
However, the EU’s plans have been criticised by the European wing of Friends of the Earth. Its economic justice programme coordinator Paul de Clerck said: “The EU’s leaked proposal on TTIP and energy is in complete contradiction with Europe’s commitments to tackle climate change, and the Paris agreement. It will flood the EU market with inefficient appliances, and consumers and the climate will foot the bill. The proposal will also hinder measures to promote renewable electricity production from wind and solar.”
Green MEP Claude Turmes told the Guardian: “These proposals are completely unacceptable. They would sabotage EU legislators’ ability to privilege renewables and energy efficiency over unsustainable fossil fuels. This is an attempt to undermine democracy in Europe.”
Ars asked the European Commission to respond to the criticisms, but at the time of publication the commission hadn’t got back to us with comment.
A boost for national economies, or a Trojan Horse for corporations?
Friends of the Earth put forward a number of areas of concern in a detailed analysis of the leak. The EU calls for “industry self-regulation of energy efficiency requirements for goods where such self-regulation is likely to deliver the policy objectives faster or in a less costly manner than mandatory requirements,” it said.
The group claimed that this would undermine the EU’s energy efficiency policies, flood the market with “cheap-to-build and expensive-to-run” products, and is contrary to evidence that “self-regulation is not effective in order to achieve public interest objectives.”
Another issue the group raised is a requirement that “each Party shall ensure that operators of transmission systems in …