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BBC NEWS | World | Europe | Greens condemn EU's carbon cost
The European Parliament's monthly move from Brussels to Strasbourg generates more than 20,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year, Green Party MEPs say.

The Green Party commissioned the study, which says the carbon cost is equal to 4,000 households in London.

The monthly trek is often referred to as the "travelling circus".

The report is published on the same day the parliament is expected to set up a temporary committee to propose new measures tackling climate change.

STRASBOURG PARLIAMENT Used by MEPs once a month Not in use for 307 days per year One chamber, 21 large and 13 small conference rooms with simultaneous translation facility 2,650 offices Cost of second chamber, 203m euros per year CO2 burden estimated at 20,268 tonnes per year "and probably much more"

Nearly 800 MEPs travel by air, road and rail to Strasbourg - along with hundreds of EU officials, journalists, lobbyists and 15 lorry-loads of official documents.

by Fran on Wed Apr 25th, 2007 at 12:36:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The upgrade of the rail connection should be fast-tracked, and then rail transport be made mandatory.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Wed Apr 25th, 2007 at 04:14:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe this presentation of the "costs" (CO2 rather than economic) will finally at least hint to some (who usually declaim it all as an Anglo whinge) that there is something here which needs looking at?
by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Apr 25th, 2007 at 04:46:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
STRASBOURG PARLIAMENT Used by MEPs once a month Not in use for 307 days per year One chamber, 21 large and 13 small conference rooms with simultaneous translation facility 2,650 offices Cost of second chamber, 203m euros per year CO2 burden estimated at 20,268 tonnes per year "and probably much more"
Let's look at the actual calendar of the European Parliament:
12 four-day part-sessions in Strasbourg and six additional two-day part-sessions in Brussels
Okay, so it is true it is used once a month (for a 4-day week each time, for plenary sessions), but the Brussels parliament is used only once every other month (for 2-day "part-sessions").
* two weeks a month for meetings of parliamentary committees and interparliamentary delegations,
* one week a month for political group meetings
These happen almost exclusively in Brussels, that's true.
and four weeks a year where MEPs concentrate exclusively on constituency work.
and these generally don't happen (I would like to see a Spanish MEP meeting their "constituents". That would be a first).

See also the 2007 calendar (PDF).

So: of 365 days in the year, we have:

  • 5 weeks of vacation in July/August and two weeks over New Year: 51 days
  • 3-day weekends for the remaining 45 weeks minus 4 working fridays: 131 days
  • 4 constituency weeks (which are mysteriously assigned working Fridays): 20 days
  • 12 4-day plenary sessions in Strasbourg: 48 days
  • 12 parliamentary group weeks: 48 days
  • The rest for parliamentary committees and part-sessions in Brussels: 67 days

In other words: of the 365 days of the year:
  • 182 days "off"
  • 67 days of parliamentary work in Brussels
  • 48 days of parliamentary work in Strasbourg
  • 48 days of party work (mostly in Brussels)
  • 20 days of constituency work (neither Brussels nor Strasbourg)


"It's the statue, man, The Statue."
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Apr 25th, 2007 at 05:20:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The waste is the parliament built in Brussels which should never have been built. The Parliament is in Strasbourg, full stop.

Oh, in other news. The net carbon emissions of green MEPs is equivalent to that of a whole London neighborhood. Scandal! Screaming headlines! Grossly sensasionalistic news.

Meh.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Apr 25th, 2007 at 05:57:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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