Updated on EU Tar Sand Vote
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EU deadlock on tar sandsAfter a heated campaign by People & Planet, and many of our partner organisations, the EU’s vote on the Fuel Quality Directive came to a stalemate last Thursday, achieving less than the three-quarters qualified majority required for approval.
The final decision on keeping tarsands oil out of Europe will now shift to the EU’s Council of Ministers. It will have two months to complete an alternative proposal before a vote at the European Parliament will decide if it is passed into law, likely in June 2012.
Who benefits from a stalemate?
While the stalemate delays binding legislation against the tar sands, campaigners succeeded in getting abstentions (rather than the expected ‘no’ votes) from the legislation’s two strongest opponents, the UK and the Netherlands, respective homes to tar sands-exploiting BP and Shell. This is thanks in huge part to all those of you who wrote to Norman Baker and Nick Clegg demanding they keep dirty oil out of Europe.
The next steps of the campaign will involve keeping up the pressure on ‘the greenest government ever’.In the face of massive vested interests, people power has shifted outright rejections of the Fuel Quality Directive by several key countries to abstentions, and people power will be the only force that will turn the UK’s abstention this time, into a ‘yes’ vote in the next round.With this next phase of the campaign, we want every MP in the country to hear about the tar sands and the steps they can take to ensure the UK take a more principled stance as discussions go forward. We will have a new e-action going live shortly, and are keen to hear your ideas to publicly hold the government to account in the coming months.
Tar Sands-Free Campaign Manager, People & Planet
To find out more or how you can help please CLICK HERE.