News > EEB: European Commission funding coal lobbyists is unacceptable

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  • 7th February 2020 - 10:04 GMT

EEB: European Commission funding coal lobbyists is unacceptable

An obscure European Commission fund seems totally incompatible with the EU’s Green Deal and climate ambitions. Riccardo Nigro (campaign Coordinator for Coal Combustion and Mines at EEB) explains.

When, at the end of 2019, the European Commission announced its brand new policy to make the European Union climate neutral by 2050, it looked like a crystal-clear point had been made: all available resources would be invested to boost renewables, energy efficiency and, in general, green research once and for all.

But among the folds of the EU budget a multi-million Euro relic continues to survive despite efforts to make Europe greener: the European Commission’s ‘Research Fund for Coal and Steel’ (RFCS). Born in the frame of the European Coal and Steel Community Treaty, when the treaty expired in 2002 its budget was transferred to the EU to finance research projects about coal and steel.

Last week, Euracoal used its RFCS funding to hold a workshop on ‘coal research’ where a group of coal lobbyists and researchers were flown in from all around the world to meet, share knowledge and strategies about the future of coal.

Evidence we obtained suggests that the travel and accomodation costs of participants at this meeting were covered by EU money through the RFCS’s Coaltech2051 project.

As the only NGO in the room, the EEB got further confirmation of what Euracoal is really about: not research but pure and simple lobbying.

Read the full article here.