Intended energy policy of Europe's 'house bank' is disappointing
This week the European Investment Bank (EIB), or ‘Europe’s house bank’, presented a concept policy note which outlines future policies on loans in the energy sector provided by the bank. Network organisations CEE Bankwatch and Counter Balance, both of which Both ENDS is a member, monitor policies and investments of the EIB. They find the new proposal very disappointing and have therefore sent a press release. Huub Scheele from Both ENDS, who has been working with our colleagues from CEE Bankwatch and Counter Balance for years, explains why.
"The last time that the EIB presented new policies in this area was in 2007 and a lot has changed since then. With this proposal the bank is trying to show how it will contribute to the energy supply of the EU, to addressing climate change and to a future in which fossil fuels are of much less importance. The concept proposed is disappointing because as a whole, it does not express any ambition. For example, investments in coal still remain possible, there are still a number of exceptions in the proposal, and it is even allowed to get loans for nuclear energy projects and the extraction of shale gas!
Instead, what would be better options for this investment bank?
"Our tax money, because that is exactly what it is, should be spent in the best possible way. The EIB should therefore not invest in fossil fuels, nuclear energy or shale gas at all. Instead, the bank should invest in ways of saving energy and in renewable energy projects. Of course, I don’t mean that the bank should switch to financing so-called 'green' or 'climate-friendly' energy projects such as mega dams, as they are devastating for people and their livelihoods. Supporting wind, solar and geothermal energy projects, the bank would really help to get Europe on the right track towards sustainable energy supplies.
Read the full press release