Big Energy still pulling the strings in Brussels six months after Paris climate deal

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New research shows fossil fuels industry lobbyists still enjoy insider access to the European Commission despite the global agreement to tackle climate change agreed six months ago in Paris.

The study by Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO) examines all lobby meetings involving Climate & Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete and Vice President for Energy Union Maroš Šefčovič or their cabinets since December 1st and shows that it's been business as usual since the Paris agreement was signed. Out of the 163 meetings with lobbyists, 71% were with industry, 17% with NGOs, 8% with think tanks and research institutions and just 5% were with trade unions.

"It's six months since the EU signed the Paris Agreement, yet our research shows Big Energy enjoying the same levels of privileged access to top climate commissioners as before,” says Corporate Europe Observatory researcher and campaigner Pascoe Sabido. “If the EU wants the world to believe it's serious about tackling climate change, it needs to end its cosy relationship with the same industries responsible for causing it.”

While Commissioner Cañete has had 164 meetings with representatives of fossil fuels industries in the year and a half since taking up the job in November 2014, his office has registered just twenty meetings with renewables and energy efficiency industry representatives. The study also revealed that Spanish companies accounted for one third of the 69 meetings Cañete and his advisors have held with oil and gas industry lobbyists since then, showing that the Commissioner is still very much in bed with his old associates. You can read the full report on CEO’s website