The Ecologist


EU: 1/25 of 408
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EU policy was made today, not by the Commission or Parliament, but by the Brussels regional government officially based at the medieval town hall on the city's Grande Place. Photo: Frank Friedrichs via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Brussels defeats toxic EU-Canada trade deal, CETA

Oliver Tickell

24th October 2016

The city of Brussels, capital of Europe, has joined with other Belgian regions to defeat the CETA 'free trade' deal between the EU and Canada, in an unprecedented victory for civil society and campaigners against the EU's 'by the corporations, for the corporations' trade agenda. more...
Global action day against TTIP, CETA & TiSA, 18th April 2015 in Berlin. Photo: Cornelia Reetz / Mehr Demokratie via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Canada-EU 'TTIP' trade deal, CETA, down - but not out

Nick Dearden

18th October 2016

The EU Council today blocked the progress of CETA, the Canada-EU trade deal, writes Nick Dearden. It's a dramatic reversal for the transatlantic 'free trade' agenda, with the unpopular TTIP US-EU agreement already close to death. But negotiators aren't giving up on their aim to push CETA through, no matter what. Our fight goes on! more...
A total of 1,378 chemicals are banned for use in cosmetics in the EU, as opposed to a mere 11 in the US. Photo: Agnes via Flickr (CC BY-ND).

Europe must resist chemical industry attacks on health and environment

Lora Verheecke & Laura Große

12th October 2016

Chemical and pesticide industry lobbyists are striving to abolish the European precautionary principle in favour of a so-called 'science-based' approach, write Lora Verheecke & Laura Große. If the EU succumbs to the spin, human health and the environment across Europe will be sacrificed to corporate profit. more...
Piglets living in cruel and unhygienic conditions on a factory farm somewhere in the UK Photo: FarmsNotFactories.

Superbug-infected pigs get into Britain unchecked, contaminate food chain

Andrew Wasley / Bureau of Investigative Journalism

14th October 2016

Regulatory failures are allowing Danish pigs infected with lethal antibiotic-resistant bacteria into British farms, writes Andrew Wasley, with contaminated pork found in UK supermarkets, and three human infections recorded. The official response? Deny there's a problem, take no action, and hope for the best. Six people may have died from the bug in Denmark, but the UK is safe, surely? more...
Monsanto Graph' in Abode of Chaos by Thierry Ehrmann, Saint Romain en Mont d'Or, France. Photo: Urban Scraper via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Bayer-Monsanto merger - corporate madness or a moment of possibility?

Pat Thomas

19th September 2016

With the Wall Street Journal warning that the GMO crop boom may be over in the face of superweeds, higher seed prices, falling yields and farmer antipathy, writes Pat Thomas, the Monsanto-Bayer merger is a sign of weakness as both companies struggle to deliver growth and profits to match shareholder expectations. We had better be ready to press home our advantage! more...
The pipelines that make up the 3,500km Southern Gas Corridor from the Caspian Sea to Italy’s Adriatic coast. Image: Bankwatch Network.

Azerbaijan-Italy gas pipeline defeats EU energy policy

Terry Macalister

14th September 2016

The European Investment Bank is set to offer €3 billion to build the 3,500 km Southern Gas Corridor pipeline from the South Caucasus to the EU, writes Terry Macalister - even though it would undermine EU climate change targets and exacerbate serious human rights abuses. more...
Weeds in farmers' crops - like these poppies in an oilseed rape field near Thirsk - may reduce profit margins - but they are hardly a 'serious danger to plant health'. Photo: James West via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

EFSA creates 'plant health' loophole for banned weedkillers

Oliver Tickell

8th September 2016

The EU's food and farming safety regulator is trying to create a 'back door' system to licence the use of herbicides that have been banned for their toxic impacts on people and wildlife - under a clearly inapplicable 'plant health' exemption. more...

UK public overwhelmingly backs EU rules to protect bees and nature

Friends of the Earth

25th August, 2016

They may have wanted to leave Europe behind but Brexiteers still want the same - if not higher levels of environmental protection - for the UK's wild bee populations and natural wild places says a new report commissioned by Friends of the Earth and published today more...
Intensive arable farming near Eakring, Nottinghamshire, England, carried out with massive taxpayer-funded subsidies to wealthy landowners. Photo: Andrew Hill via Flickr (CC BY-ND).

A post-EU agricultural policy for people and planet

Alex Scrivener

12th August 2016

Brexit gives the UK the chance to reform the system of agricultural subsidies that rewards wealthy landowners at the expense of taxpayers, the global south, the environment, and small scale sustainable farmers, writes Alex Scrivener. But strong, effective campaigning will be needed to bring about the changes we desperately need. more...

Charting Environmental Conflict - The Atlas of Environmental Justice

Nick Meynen.

20th July, 2016

Instead of leaching the world's resources to support out-of-control consumerism, EU leaders could do worse than ponder novelist Victor Hugo's claim that whilst "you can kill people, you can't kill an idea whose time has come", writes NICK MEYNEN more...
A bottomland hardwood clearcut that Dogwood Alliance have linked to Enviva, the company that runs the Ahoskie pellet mill, which supplies the UK's Drax power station. Photo: Matt Adam Williams.

Dirtier than coal: burning forests for 'green' energy

Matt Williams

19th July 2016

The UK imports millions of tons of American wood pellets every year to be burned in power stations for 'climate friendly' electricity, writes Matt Williams. But his recent visit to the southern US showed him that this practice is devastating beautiful, natural forests rich in wildlife - while the UK government's own research shows that it's worse for the climate than the coal it replaces. more...
The Iraq war was a disaster for the entire Middle East. But it also blew the wheels off the entire European project. Photo: eddiecoyote via Flickr (CC BY).

What Chilcot won't tell us: the Iraq War crashed the European project

Dr Robert Dover

5th July 2016

The political vacuum left by the Iraq war provided the space for radical extremism to take root in the Middle East and rampage across the region, writes Dr Robert Dover. That makes Tony Blair directly responsible for the refugee crisis that is destabilising Europe today, reflected in the UK's Brexit vote. And it fatally wounded the credibility of his 'third way' social democratic politics across the EU. more...

EU: 1/25 of 408
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How committed is Tory Party hopeful Andrea Leadsom MP to climate change action? That much. Photo: Policy Exchange via Flickr (CC BY).

The UK can still lead on climate change - even after Brexit

Tim Rayner & Brendan Moore

8th July 2016

In its decision to leave the EU, the UK is cutting itself off from one of the world's most effective systems of climate governance, write Tim Rayner & Brendan Moore. But we still have our own Climate Change Act and can lead the EU, if not as a member, at least by example - provided current and future Conservative Party leadership make their commitment clear, and implement their promises. more...
'Leave' banner in Epping, South of London, UK, 19th June 2016. Photo: diamond geezer via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

How the Remainers got it so wrong: the lessons of climate change campaigning

George Marshall

26th July 2016

Key to the Leave campaign's success was its focus on 'core values' like patriotism, independence and cultural purity, writes George Marshall, summed up in simple memes like 'defending our borders'. The Remainers' reliance on elite and expert opinion was hopelessly flat-footed - and went against everything climate campaigners have learned about winning over public opinion. more...
Image: muffinn via Flickr (CC BY).

The Brexit con: the exit Britain needs is from neoliberal capitalism

Pete Dolack

30th June 2016

The UK's exit from the EU won't deliver for the 'victims of globalisation' whose votes were decisive in the referendum result, writes Pete Dolack. All the economic scenarios advanced to date envisage more of the 'free trade' and neoliberalism that has global empowered capital against communities and the well-paid jobs that once sustained them. Plus ca change ... more...
Was it all a beautiful dream? View of the Hinkley Point C site as visualised by EDF.

Brexit curse hits nuclear power, new London runway

Paul Brown

29th June 2016

Following the vote to leave the EU, the UK's energy and climate change policy faces major challenges, writes Paul Brown, with new nuclear power and a third London runway at Heathrow runway looking like the first casualties. more...
Photo: hit thatswitch via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Higher fuel bills, less renewables, an end to nuclear power: Brexit's energy shakeout

Chris Goodall

28th June 2016

The economic impacts of the Brexit vote will very soon make themselves felt to British consumers, writes Chris Goodall - kicking off with higher fuel bills and pump prices. The good news is that nuclear power is now looking increasingly unaffordable. But renewables and green energy research are also likely to suffer, especially if under a right-wing Brexit government. more...
Photo: threefishsleeping via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

It feels like the tragedy of a generation, but we need to gear up not give up

Alex Scrivener

28th June 2016

We have a serious responsibility to fight the more unsavoury symptoms of Brexit, writes Alex Scrivener - making the case for free movement for people, defending the regulations that protect our environment and workers' rights, resisting imperialism abroad and racism on our streets. more...
Jeremy Corbyn speaking outside Parliament about human rights in Bahrain, 12th September 2013. Photo: YouTube / RevolutionBahrainMC via Wikimedia commons (CC BY).

Brexit? It's not over till it's over. And here's why it may never happen

Oliver Tickell

27th June 2016

Depressed at the Breferendum result? So you might be, if you are bothered by the environment, social justice and a successful economy, writes Oliver Tickell. But it may never come to that. In fact it's just possible that the Brexit vote could deliver us a reformed 'peoples' EU' that includes the UK, under a progressive government led by Jeremy Corbyn. Here's how. more...

The power of redemptive anger

Jonathon Porritt

27th June 2016

People have been talking about some kind of 'progressive alliance' ever since the 2010 General Election, writes Jonathon Porritt. If ever there was a moment where such an alliance could start coming together, and start working out a game plan to transform our political prospects between now and 2020, this has to be it. more...

Help to get toxic chemicals banned from our towns, cities, streets and parks

Nick Mole - Pesticides Action Network (PAN) UK

27th June 2016

Last week, as the UK voted itself out of the European Union, Greenpeace called for another exit strategy - a glyphosate exit plan. Nick Mole from PAN UK explains how we can all get involved in a campaign to ban all pesticides - not just glyphosate - in our towns and cities more...
Without EU directives and regulations to protect us, could scenes like this become common in the UK countryside. Waste water pond in the Pilliga Forest, NSW, Australia, June 2011. Photo: Kate Ausburn / Lock the Gate Alliance.

Brexit could lead to a bonfire of fracking regulations

Zachary Davies Boren / Energydesk

21st June 2016

Almost all UK laws that regulate fracking's impact on the environment emanate from EU directives and regulations, writes Zachary Davies Boren. Once out of the EU, the UK would be free to amend them, scrap them or simply ignore them. And given the UK's record of support for fracking and lobbying in Brussels for deregulation, that may be exactly what the Brexiteers have planned. more...

Brexit - a nasty sting in the tail for Britain's bees?

Dave Timms

21st June, 2016

Britain's bees are under threat from Brexit and moves to allow farmers to use banned bee-harming 'neonictinoid' pesticides, warns Dave Timms, Bees Campaigner with Friends of the Earth. With 20 species extinct since 1900 and a further 35 under threat, how much more can our bees take? more...

Small is Beautiful but Big Matters Too

Molly Scott Cato

20th June, 2016

The only revolution, if we leave Europe, would be an uprising against a raft of EU environmental and social legislation, under the guise of ‘reducing red tape'. This would leave workers, our important nature habitats and the health of our citizens in far worse shape than is currently the case within the EU warns Green MEP Molly Scott Cato more...
If we really want to 'take back control', let's begin with our own institutions - such as the House of Lords, and ensure it represents the full spectrum of British society. Photo: ukhouseoflords via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Take back real control! A Green response to Brexit

Victor Anderson & Rupert Read

18th July 2016

The winning Brexit slogan was 'Take Back Control', write Victor Anderson & Rupert Read. But leaving the EU will only increase the power of corrupt elites unless the UK reforms its own democratic governance, combats the excessive power of corporations, upholds the rights of all its citizens, decentralises its economy, and forges progressive alliances with its European partners. more...


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