Limerick EU elections candidate claims ‘darker side’ to business concessions by European parliament

People Before Profit have named Cian Prendiville as their candidate for the European Elections.

LIMERICK People Before Profit candidate for the Ireland South constituency in forthcoming European Elections, Cian Prendiville, has hit out at what he claims to be a ‘darker side’ in how Europe’s climate plan is carried out.

Mr Prendiville, a former Anti Austerity Alliance councillor in Limerick, criticised the plan’s focus on reducing carbon emissions by 90 per cent by 2050, claiming little detailed analysis on how this is to be achieved.

“The EU talks a good talk, presenting itself as a moral leader on climate change. But behind the PR wrapping there is a darker side of concessions to business interests,” he claimed.

“The EU Commissioner, Wopke Hoekstra, has openly stated that the EU’s climate ambitions must not interfere with ‘making sure our businesses stay competitive’. Hoekstra began his career at Shell and worked for 11 years at the  McKinsey consultancy company that has represented fossil fuel interests.

“It is, therefore, no surprise that the EU’s plan places a major emphasis on carbon capture and storage. This has become the main greenwashing tactic of the fossil fuel industry.”

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Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), Mr Prendiville says, is an untested technology.

“In its current capacity, it is only responsible for a 0.1 per cent reduction in global annual emissions. 81 per cent of carbon captured to date has been used to extract more oil via the process of Enhanced Oil Recovery. This means CCS is being predominantly used for carbon-emitting oil extraction that wouldn’t have otherwise been possible.

“Promises of a 30 per cent reduction in agricultural pollution between 2015 and 2024 have been dropped.”

The PBP candidate is of the view that a real policy for climate reduction would make a distinction between the large agri-business and small farmers.

“It would significantly reduce CAP subsidies for big farmers and agri-business and use the money saved to subsidize small farmers who set aside four per cent of their land for non-productive purposes.

“As long as the EU embraces neoliberal measures which help business profitability, its talk about achieving climate targets will remain aspirational.

“The EU could, for example, stop funding wars in Ukraine and transfer money to investment in free public transport across the continent.”