Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

The Nine Lives of Dutch PM Mark Rutte

by Oui Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 11:54:50 AM EST

A March to COP26 in Glasgow ...

A New Classic in Climate Change Litigation: The Dutch Supreme Court Decision in the Urgenda Case | EJIL Talk - Jan. 6, 2020 |


The judgment of the Dutch Supreme Court in State of the Netherlands v Urgenda is a landmark for future climate change litigation. On the 20th of December 2019, the Supreme Court held that on the basis of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) the Netherlands has a positive obligation to take measures for the prevention of climate change and that it has to reduce its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions with at least 25% by the end of 2020, compared to 1990 levels. An unofficial translation of the full judgement will be published on the website of the Dutch judiciary after the 13th of January 2020.

The judgment is significant as it demonstrates how a court can determine responsibilities of an individual state, notwithstanding the fact that climate change is caused by a multiplicity of other actors who share responsibility for its harmful effects.

Mark Rutte Leads An EU Sceptic Cabinet

Excellent analysis of Dutch party politics post March 2021 election ...

What do the elections tell us about Dutch EU policy?

Do not expect a major shift in substance on EU affairs from the new government. For one, the prime minister is the same. Mark Rutte is an astute political manager, not a man of big ideas. His view of the EU has improved over the years, but anything beyond the internal market he sees as a necessary evil. D66 wants the post of minister for European Affairs to return in a new cabinet. But traditionally, EU affairs ministers are close confidantes of the prime minister, and so this new Dutch voice in Brussels would again be mainly Rutte's. Furthermore, D66 and VVD need the Christian-democrats to form a government. Despite having lost seats, this gives the CDA bargaining power and Hoekstra will push back against dovish economic-financial EU policies or a migration regime that he considers too lenient. It also suggests the coalition negotiation could take plenty of time.

Dutch PM Rutte Failed On Climate Targets

How Mark Rutte succeeds to grab positive vibes and media headlines ...

Mark Rutte UN speech and news headlines ...

Speech by Prime Minister Mark Rutte at the United Nations General Assembly - Sept. 24, 2021 |

Topics in his speech ...  

Of course Rutte manages to pull wool over listeners' eyes 🤥

Recently he left the cabinet formation abruptly for a visit to close friend and ally Boris Johnson one day after the Indo-Pacific military AUKUS pact was announced.

Laissez-faire Handling Outbreak by PM Boris Johnson

His suggested agenda priorities: COVID-19 policy and sustainability or green energy. I called BS on his visit ...

Rutte would love to join the Indo-Pacific Naval alliance ... old times relived.

The Carrier Strike Group deployment and Global Britain | UK Defence Journal - March 11, 2021 |

The true Dutch hero on climate change is lawyer Roger Cox ...

Shell: Netherlands court orders oil giant to cut emissions | BBC News - May 26, 2021 |

Friends of the Earth Europe legal action against Shell

Showing little or no empathy of the destructive nature of capitalistic, conservative policy, Mark Rutte manages to keep that smile on his face ... in full control in The Hague representing the wealthy few ...

Will Rutte's Falsehoods Catch Up With Him?

The party Christian Union of leader Segers has sworn not to serve another term under Mark Rutte … what the Dutch need?

Christian Union election slogan: Belief, Hope, and … Love 🙏🏽😖

Slochteren natural gas exploration started in the 1960s … it replaced coal mining in Limburg.

For the population in the province of Groningen, the collapsing earth and quakes was devastating. Dutch government in The Hague proofs once again, they do not care … busy with large corporation and keeping the money flowing to the very well educated and wealthy part of Holland.

Shored-up homes are a common sight in earthquake-hit Groningen

Display:
Mark Rutte cannot promise a date when the reparations for families will be completed ... he has no shame!

Ministers face fresh accusations of misleading MPs over child benefit scandal | Dutch News - April 22, 2021 |

by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 12:41:01 PM EST

As gas bills rise, more households fall victim to 'energy poverty'

by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 12:44:22 PM EST
Say no to a living wage or raising the minimum salary ...

by Oui on Fri Oct 1st, 2021 at 07:32:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Mona Keijzer (CDA) has just been booted from the caretaker cabinet by Mark Rutte ... her interview in rightwing tabloid De Telegraaf contradicted the new relaxed COVID-19 regulations for bars, restaurants and music festivals. She didn't like the entry limitation for QR pass holders or proof of recent test result.

Prime Minister Rutte fires State Secretary Mona Keijzer after criticism of corona pass

by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 01:08:19 PM EST
by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 01:12:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Fast track pink slip from Office of PM Mark Rutte

by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 06:53:05 PM EST
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by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 01:14:48 PM EST

Vanuatu wants to bring the climate crisis to the International Court of Justice

The small Pacific state hopes, although a legal opinion from the ICJ is not binding, that it will contribute to the emergence of international legislation for generations to come on the material and human consequences of global warming, has indicated his government.

As a single state cannot seek legal advice from the ICJ at The Hague, Vanuatu will work to mobilize other countries to vote in favor of this initiative at the next UN general assembly in September 2022, said government spokesman Yvon Basil told AFP.

Vanuatu was among others devastated by Cyclone Pam in 2015.

by Oui on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 06:42:47 PM EST
HAPPY VANUATU DAY!
by Cat on Sat Sep 25th, 2021 at 09:25:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]

    "There is only one conceivable conclusion and that is resign!"

Listen to your own words Mark! You block progressive clean energy policy and need to go for sake of the Nation.

A comment added on Sept. 20, 2009 ...

paradoxale: @ those people who think we've really made progress..

And if I want to buy a house now, what then? The energy bill? Why has purchasing power increased? If I were to buy a house, I would have exactly 0.0 purchasing power. What a bullshit on a stick.

I understand the government. To be able to participate in today's world you just have to follow a backward policy, unfortunately it is no different. Banks and large companies are now in charge, along with a top layer that maintains self-enrichment. When I read this myself I almost think, what a left-wing bullshit. But I'm afraid it really is reality.

by Oui on Mon Sep 27th, 2021 at 11:51:26 AM EST
Free reign of mobsters now a threat to Dutch politicians ...

Dutch PM Rutte under increased security due to threats -media | SwissInfo / Reuters |

The Netherlands has sharply boosted security around Prime Minister Mark Rutte after police received signals of a possible attack by criminals linked to the drug trade, a Dutch newspaper reported on Monday, citing sources familiar with the matter.

Although gun violence in the Netherlands is rare, killings and violence linked to the drug trade have become common in recent years, as underworld figures compete for territory.

A government source, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the report in De Telegraaf. Dutch national security authorities declined to comment on the report.

Money, Drugs, Guns, Liquidation - Love A'dam | EuroTrib - Sept. 18, 2019 |

Motive most likely a hostage taking in exchange of a prominent drug lord.

by Oui on Mon Sep 27th, 2021 at 12:34:15 PM EST
by Oui on Mon Sep 27th, 2021 at 12:41:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Australian PM Morrison wants to operate in the dark, in full secrecy to avoid parliamentary scrutiny ...

by Oui on Mon Sep 27th, 2021 at 02:06:17 PM EST
Coal export doesn't match goal zero-emissions.

by Oui on Mon Sep 27th, 2021 at 04:19:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Mon Sep 27th, 2021 at 04:25:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Silver lining: one Australia-Scotland return trip CO2 emissions saved.
by Bernard on Tue Sep 28th, 2021 at 02:08:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Silent march for Armenian women killed in Almelo stabbing

The two women were aunt and niece, aged 70 and 52 years. "With this silent march, in addition to commemorating their loved ones, the relatives also want to express their powerlessness," lawyer Sebas Diekstra said on behalf of the victims' family.

The victims were Maral Dermovsesian and Zonund Kardanakyan, both of Armenian descent and both members of the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU), the Public Radio of Armenia reported. Dermovsesian headed the AGBU Women's Committee. 

A 28-year-old man from Almelo, a neighbor, is suspected of killing them. He was seen waving a crossbow around and firing it from his balcony in the same building where the women were killed. After multiple attempts to approach him safely, the police eventually shot him in the chest. He was taken to hospital, and was still unconscious.

According to RTV Oost, the suspect was admitted to mental health institutions several times with psychological problems.

by Oui on Tue Sep 28th, 2021 at 05:29:55 PM EST

Policy adapt for Conservatives ... where the spending goes ...

by Oui on Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 01:06:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]

No breakthrough in cabinet formation talks; "Definitive conclusions" Wednesday

by Oui on Tue Sep 28th, 2021 at 06:10:05 PM EST
by Oui on Tue Sep 28th, 2021 at 09:25:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Wednesday ... butchers call it the "minced meat" day ... appears the party frustrations are high and the grab for power not settled for nine months after resignation due to failed policy. Some beef needs to be grinded down to size ...
by Oui on Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 06:29:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The Longest Formation in Dutch history. Why did it take so long? What did it result in? And will that last? - 225 days (2017)

Well at least for Rutte III a cabinet was formed and doomed to failure ... a dictatorial regime with dogmatic policy caring for wealth, profits and low taxes. Not solving the problems of sustainable energy, agriculture, housing, modern public transport and climate change. Rutte has an army of highly qualified PR consultants building his image while he is a man of secrecy and scorns transparency. He is simply not honest and will never show humility or admit he was mistaken. Patching over poor decisions and wearing a big smile when the camera is running.

by Oui on Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 07:44:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Fri Oct 1st, 2021 at 07:31:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Wed Sep 29th, 2021 at 07:17:18 AM EST
It's up to the four parties to agree to continue the demissionair cabinet ...

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 07:26:29 AM EST
There is a request from informer Johan Remkes to think about a specific variant that could lead to substantive discussions between the parties.

"Breakthrough in formation in sight: a restart of the current cabinet is being seriously discussed

After hours of consultation, a breakthrough in the cabinet formation appears to be in sight. With the knife on the throat, a restart of the current cabinet of four parties VVD, D66, CDA and CU."

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 07:27:41 AM EST
Most likely outcome after months of political arm wrestling ... such an embarrassment for The Hague and democracy in general. Along the way, PM Mark Rutte lost 11 ministers or deputies ...

Dutch Politics Cabinet Rutte resigns following childcare benefit scandal | Jan. 15, 2021 |

In the report "Unprecedented Injustice", a Parliamentary Inquiry Committee concluded, among other things, that fundamental principles of the rule of law were violated by the Dutch Tax Authority. Legislative implementation to fight fraud leading to these violations was not sufficiently overseen by several Cabinet members, which is now one of the reasons for the Cabinet to resign. The consequences of the resignation - in particular how the outgoing Cabinet will deal with the COVID-crisis - will become clear in the next few days.

What happened!?

The childcare benefit scandal is a political affair in which approximately 26,000 parents became unjustly victim of suspected fraud with the childcare allowance and/or became victims of a hard fraud approach by the Tax Administration. The result was that many of these parents found themselves in significant financial difficulty, in some cases even bankruptcy and uncertainty for many years. Many families were pursued for fraud before the courts, ordered to repay benefits and denied the right for appeal from 2012 on.

This came to light in September 2018 and subsequently led to the resignation of state secretary of Finance Menno Snel (D66). Current Prime Minister Mark Rutte (VVD) was head of the ministerial committee against fraud at that time. Current minister of Economic Affairs Eric Wiebes (VVD) was state secretary for Finance. The Parliamentary Inquiry Committee reports he misinformed the House of Representatives about the issue. In addition, Lodewijk Asscher (PvdA), then minister for Social Affairs and currently opposition leader of the Social Democrats in the House of Representatives, was also held responsible. Asscher announced on January 14 to resign over the affair as political leader for the upcoming elections. The government has apologized and in 2020 set aside compensation of over 500 million euros.

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 07:29:45 AM EST
For a second time the left of center parties were invited to sit at the table and meet the informer. Once again, both Rutte (VVD) and Hoekstra (CDA) blocked any sort of participation of the combination Green Party and Labour. The major problems facing Dutch society cannot be solved by the present cabinet under "leadership" of Rutte.

Five party coalition unlikely as CDA leader rules out GroenLinks PvdA idea | Dutch News - June 2, 2021 |

Cabinet formation talks break down: Right wing won't work with left | NL Times - Aug. 31, 2021 |

Mind you, sitting at the table where the only discussion was who wants to join the Rutte/Kaag cabinet and never any substantive policy talks happened. Ugly power politics for the corporate lobby groups in The Hague. People are not in consideration.

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 07:47:28 AM EST

Translation:

    This cabinet has not solved the housing crisis, climate crisis and inequality. Why would that be different with a continuation of this coalition?

    What the Netherlands needs is change. This is more of the same.

Where Did the Dutch Elections Go Wrong for GroenLinks?

Four years ago, the Dutch Green party GroenLinks was a major part of the Green wave rising throughout Europe. It achieved its best election result in history and a realistic shot at entering government. In 2021, however, the party lost almost half its seats after four years of opposition.

'Digital' in Dutch Election Manifestos

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 11:59:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 07:48:16 AM EST

Blackstone owns housing worth €800m in NL, but pays no tax

Home buyer Blackstone circumvents tax in the Netherlands due to trick

According to the newspaper, the homes that Blackstone owns in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht are housed in separate companies, which in turn are part of companies in Luxembourg, the Cayman Islands and Jersey.

The profits fall into companies in those countries, where taxes are low. On the other hand, companies in the Netherlands are making a loss on paper, due to interest charges on loans they have with Blackstone companies in Luxembourg. As a result, they have little or no tax to pay in our country, according to de Volkskrant.

That saves the tax authorities millions in corporate tax, according to the newspaper. In addition, the construction would allow Blackstone to deposit more money for Dutch homes than its competitors.

Blackstone is buying up Dutch residential property from private owners | Dutch News - March 12, 2019 |

In 2019, the UN's housing advisor accused private equity firms and Blackstone of exploiting tenants, `wreaking havoc' in communities and helping to fuel a global housing crisis.

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 08:21:02 AM EST
by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 08:24:38 AM EST

Centrist Dutch party opens door to 4-party coalition talks | The Independent |

D66 leader Sigrid Kaag long ruled out joining a coalition with the Christian Union party due to ideological differences, but lifted that blockade in recent days in an attempt to breathe new life into the ailing talks.

She said she wants an ambitious policy blueprint for the next government.

"This means that the Netherlands will become a climate frontrunner in Europe, that we will make the largest structural investment in education ever and that the Netherlands will take a leading role at the European Union," Kaag said.

She said her party wants the new coalition to be "more progressive, more generous, more open and more humane."

But she sounded a note of caution ahead of prospective talks.

"Will it work? I do not know," Kaag said.

Climate frontrunner and more progressive policy with PM Mark Rutte? Fool yourself but not the voters!

by Oui on Thu Sep 30th, 2021 at 03:08:01 PM EST
by Oui on Sun Oct 3rd, 2021 at 05:09:46 PM EST
Corporate power ...

Electricity from largest Dutch solar park to power local Google data centre | Delfzijl, Groningen - 2017 |

Google and Eneco announced that Google will purchase all of the green electricity (27 Gigawatt hours) generated by Sunport Delfzijl, the largest solar energy park in the Netherlands, for a period of ten years. The agreement with Eneco is Google's fourth investment in sustainable energy in the Netherlands and the second agreement between Eneco and Google. The electricity generated by the solar park will help offset the energy consumption of Google's data centre located twenty kilometres further up in the Eemshaven.

Sunny outlook

That customers can implement large-scale projects, LBBW is involved in project finance - as with the construction of the Netherlands' biggest solar park in Delfzijl.

Exemplary construct of privatization and globalization ... subsidize corporations and limit consumer power. Energy poverty.

by Oui on Mon Oct 4th, 2021 at 10:52:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
VVD starts talking about nuclear energy again: fewer wind turbines, more nuclear power plants | Tubantie - Jan.2019 |

The liberals continue to profile themselves as a right-wing party on climate change. While party chairman Klaas Dijkhoff was critical last week about the climate agreement and its affordability, the VVD is now starting again on nuclear energy.

Dijkhoff previously reopened the discussion last November with a plea for nuclear energy as a way to limit CO2 emissions. Although Dijkhoff's words are mainly criticized, it appears that the VVD has now started an investigation.

The three nuclear plans that the party has calculated consist of keeping the current nuclear power station in Borsele open in Zeeland for longer, building new nuclear power stations in the Netherlands and realizing new nuclear power stations in a European context.

Ruling party does not want to implement climate agreement

by Oui on Mon Oct 4th, 2021 at 10:40:56 AM EST
VVD Election Platform ...

Yes to nuclear power stations, no to more wind turbines and solar panels: 'The Netherlands a clutter country, we don't want that'.

Netherlands contemplates ambitious nuclear new-build programme | GCR - Sept. 2020 |

The Netherlands is to launch a consultation on whether to build up to 10 nuclear power plants after a study commissioned by the Ministry of Economics found that nuclear energy would be as cheap as wind or solar power.

The report by nuclear consultancy Enco backs the addition of nuclear capacity. At present the country has one 485MW power plant at Borssele near the border with Belgium (pictured).

As well as building plants, the government wants to relax nuclear regulations and make state funding available to subsidise projects.

Backers believe construction of the first plant could be under way by 2025.

Erik Wiebes, the economics minister, said in a letter to the lower house of parliament that the government would work on a motion to gauge public support and identify plant locations.

"The researchers argue that nuclear energy is no more expensive than wind and solar if the system costs are included in the same way. They argue that the system costs of solar and wind are insufficiently weighted in the costs of those technologies," Wiebes said in the letter.

The initiative is also seen as an appeal to voters by the governing People's Party for Freedom (VVD) ahead of next year's general election.

Long time survey for locations would add a nuclear plant in Borssele and one in quake country of Groningen, the industrial zone of the Eemshaven.

by Oui on Mon Oct 4th, 2021 at 10:43:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EU on a 'tightrope' as winter gas supply worries increase | Politico - Aug. 19, 2021 |

The European Union's natural gas reserves are well under normal levels -- and if they don't fill up by October, the bloc could face a price squeeze if there's a repeat of last winter's cold snap, analysts warn.

"Going into the current winter with less in storage, Europe is walking a tightrope -- and it wouldn't take a huge gust of wind to knock us off," said Jack Sharples, a research fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. "All it would take is for some [liquefied natural gas] projects currently offline to not come back on, or some unplanned maintenance on a pipeline bringing gas into Europe, or just another cold winter."

The EU has the capacity to store over 117 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas, or roughly a fifth of its annual consumption, according to Gas Infrastructure Europe.

US blame Russia for manipulating Europe gas prices, Moscow retorts the EU messed it up | EurActiv - Sept. 22, 2021 |

by Oui on Mon Oct 4th, 2021 at 07:57:27 PM EST
Walking a Tightrope: Natural Gas Prices Hit New Heights | Oxford Quarterly Review - Aug. 24, 2021 |

In Q2 2021, the most notable development has been the slow pace of stock replenishment. A return to net withdrawals in the second half of April meant that stocks on 1 May were lower than on 1 April, thus delaying the start of the injection season by a month. Since then, injections have proceeded slowly.

As a result, stocks held on 27 July 2021 (58 bcm) were slightly lower than on 27 July in 2017 and 2018 (62 bcm and 60 bcm, respectively), and significantly lower than stocks held on 27 July in 2019 (83 bcm) and 2020 (88 bcm). For stocks to reach even 80 bcm, by the end of the injection season in October 2021, net storage injections will need to accelerate in the coming months.

The Dutch had to cut gas production of Slochteren fields in Groningen due to extensive structural damage of houses and building caused by earthquakes. As far as I am aware, Russian export to the EU is higher than in 2020. Where is the fleet of LNG cargo ships promised by the White House ... a reliable supplier?

U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) has the potential to help match EU gas needs |  2019 |

The LNG Shipping Forecast: costs rebounding, outlook uncertain

by Oui on Mon Oct 4th, 2021 at 07:58:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Tue Oct 5th, 2021 at 09:16:57 PM EST

Translation:

    D66 requests an emergency debate. Hundreds of asylum children are at risk of growing up without parents, because @ankiebroekers is trying out a new measure on her own. Against the advice of Immigration Department (IND) officials. The last word has not yet been said on this.

New rule means hundreds of refugee children may not be reunited with their parents | Dutch News |

Caretaker junior justice minister Ankie Broekers-Knol is reportedly pushing ahead with a new measure without properly informing MPs, claims the NRC.

The ruling aims to stop children being sent ahead to the Netherlands alone and then claiming asylum for their close family. It would mean unaccompanied minors who are taken into the care of another family member here can no longer have their parents or siblings join them.

Although requests for reunification have been falling in the last few years - from 3,860 at the height of the Syrian refugee crisis to 985 last year - the caretaker government wants to limit them further. Some 90% of solo minors asked for their parents and siblings to come to the Netherlands, an average of six new migrants.

However, immigration experts have said the new policy contravenes the United Nations convention on the rights of the child and the 2003 European guideline on family renunification.

Immigration service IND also doubts whether the new measure will survive legal scrutiny, claims the NRC. Broekers-Knol is aware of the `legal and practical weaknesses' but wants to give a clear signal to stop the practice, one IND chief reportedly said.

The justice ministry did not comment on Broekers-Knol and the IND warning but told the NRC the measure had been chosen `after careful deliberation'.

....
Last year the Netherlands refused to participate in a European initiative to accommodate 5,100 children who were living Greek refugee camps because they were `unaccompanied minors sent ahead to make quarter for their families', the government said at the time.

In a xenophobic and Islamophobic Dutch society, the party VVD of Mark Rutte will gain more seats in parliament ... "earning" voters who otherwise move to the more extreme Rightwing party PVV of Geert Wilders ... a Dutch success story. 😖😡

Further reading ...

Asylum: Child Sensitive Return | UNICEF - 2019 |

by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 09:51:06 AM EST

It causes a "brain-drain" and the receptive country of The Netherlands cannot bear another refugee surge of 100,000 Afghan citizens, spouses and children included.

Justice State Sec. regrets insensitive remarks about Afghan asylum seeker

In the AD interview, the VVD State Secretary said she feared a brain drain if highly-educated people leave Afghanistan. She also said the Dutch asylum system couldn't handle 100 thousand asylum requests.

Broekers-Knol used the same argument the Taliban uses to prevent people from leaving Afghanistan with the brain drain statement. "That is bad for a country, and that is a concern I sincerely feel."

Broekers-Knol's remarks received fierce criticism from parliament. Coalition parties CDA, ChristenUnie, and D66, called them "misleading," "very inappropriate and painful," and "horrible," respectively. Opposition party PvdA called the remarks "brainless and heartless."

Ankie Broekers-Knol became responsible for refugee policy in the caretaker cabinet of Mark Rutte from June last year. She was longtime president of the Senate (Eerste Kamer).

by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 09:52:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 02:29:33 PM EST
by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 02:31:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Reasonable points over all, in particular coordination on use and replacement of gas.

Point 3 is a reform of the whole sale electricity market. Nuclear power is not mentioned, but as I mentioned on the other thread new nuclear power is today not viable in the market as currently constructed. Something to keep an eye on.

Point 5 is a rather unclear call to more predictable carbon price through some unspecified change to the ETS. Also something to keep on eye on so that the system isn't reformed to take all the teeth out.

by fjallstrom on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 11:20:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 02:32:37 PM EST

Russian pipeline gas exports to China nearly triple in 2021 | Neftegaz RU |

by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 02:33:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Russia to Supply Natural Gas to Hungary via TurkStream

Gazprom Export, a subsidiary of Russia's state-owned Gazprom, will supply Russian natural gas to Hungary, bypassing the traditional transit route through Ukraine for the next 15 years.

According to the company statement, Hungary will start receiving Gazprom's gas via TurkStream, a pipeline running from Russia to Turkey across the Black Sea, and the pipelines of southeastern Europe beginning from October 1, 2021.

The contracts envisage supplies of up to 4.5 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas annually, of which 3.5 bcm will be transported through Hungary's interconnector with Serbia and 1 bcm -- via the pipeline running from Austria.

Ukraine Says Russia Halts Gas Flows To Hungary, Adding To Jitters In European Gas Markets | RFERL |

Further reading ...

Ukraine and the Caspian - An Opportunity for the United States | Rand - 2000 |

    The United States has said that the Caspian region, and the development of its energy resources, is a key national security interest. It has also made clear its commitment to the independence of Ukraine.
by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 04:44:27 PM EST

Gazprom ignores additional gas transit capacity via Ukraine and Poland

by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 04:45:36 PM EST
by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 05:55:28 PM EST
The 2 years delay in Nord Stream 2 has cost Russia billions and it was forced to invest in new Siberian pipelines to China. The higher gas price is quite welcome for Russia's Treasury. Putin promised to increase delivery to Europe, however this will not ease the pressure on price as there are too many uncertainties due to winter cold and low storage level in Europe. Coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, Europe has lost crucial time to energy transition and investment in durable and sustainable solutions.

Translation:

    Price at 150 €/MWh today (equivalent: $300 dollar per barrel oil )...

    a) Market forces, the hard way, which leads to less demand
    b) Short squeeze from suppliers who have gone short
    c) Fear factor: start of winter with half-full gas storage
    d) All of the above

by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 08:26:09 PM EST
by Oui on Wed Oct 6th, 2021 at 08:28:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Hey ... read the fine print ... it's free market economy of supply and demand.

Gazprom Accumulates Storage Capacities in Germany | Jamestown - Feb. 13, 2014 |

Can Europe escape Gazprom's energy stranglehold? | DW News - July 11, 2021 |

When it comes to gas supplies to the EU, Russia's state-owned corporation steps on the brakes. Is Russia building up political pressure in order to push through the operation of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline?

Trouble is brewing on the European gas market. In the wake of a long, cold winter, natural gas reservoirs are unusually low and should, in principle, be refilled very quickly. Russia's state-owned corporation Gazprom could increase supplies.

The market leader, however, has not done that, despite prices recently reaching a 13-year high. In turn, there is growing concern across Europe that there may be insufficient gas supplies for the upcoming winter. 

No additional transit through Ukraine

Gazprom has not booked any additional gas transit through Ukraine in July, although deliveries of Russian natural gas to the EU will drop by more than 2 billion cubic meters this month.

Due to scheduled maintenance, the two remaining transportation routes to Germany will be temporarily discontinued. The Yamal pipeline across Belarus and Poland was shut down this week, and the much larger Nord Stream pipeline through the Baltic Sea will be closed between July 13 and July 23.

Russia-Hungary Sign 15 Year TurkStream Gas Deal

Overthrow democratically elected regime in Februari 2014 and US sanctions on Russia changed the landscape of dealing with Gazprom, storage facilities and gas delivery to Germany.

Controversial Deal - A German natural gas storage facility and Gazprom

Wintershall, subsidiary of the Bayer chemicals giant, is selling a substantial part of Germany's natural gas infrastructure to Gazprom, Russia's state-run gas supplier - including the Rehden storage facility near Bremen, the largest in western Europe. In return, Wintershall is being granted direct access to Russian natural gas fields. The deal was signed in 2013 after lengthy preparations, but the Ukrainian crisis now puts it in a different light.

by Oui on Wed Oct 13th, 2021 at 08:54:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Wed Oct 13th, 2021 at 08:54:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Oui on Thu Oct 14th, 2021 at 11:56:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Not quite what the parties themselves have stated. The new coalition does not have a majority in the Senate and needs additional support in policy and legislation. The parties on the left want to participate in the talks and not be confronted with final drafts. They are willing to participate in minister posts in the new cabinet, however the Rutte doctrine of secrecy and "presidential" power should be history. Dutch government is a parliamentary democracy and should offer transparency in debates.

Not sure Mark Rutte can do a makeover and become a different personality and a truthteller.

by Oui on Thu Oct 7th, 2021 at 11:49:40 AM EST
Could the party ditch Rutte if he personally is the stumbling bloc to government formation?
by fjallstrom on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 11:29:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There was a brief period after the election when a number of scandals broke into the news. There were two parties of the Rutte III coalition supporting a vote of no confidence. However, a caretaker cabinet who had resigned ahead of the general election ... cannot be send away for a second time.

Smart ass politician bides his time and delayed formation talks over the summer months ... managed to screw-up Covid-19 policy once more with slogan "dancing with Janssen".

Five months passed by with parties sitting at the table solely laying out playing cards who would want to govern with whom. No policy content was part of these talks and the caretaker government prepared Budget 2022 for launch third Tuesday in September. Because it was a caretaker cabinet, no long-term policy could be part of next year's budget ... two years of stand still. Is unacceptable for any nation ... in The Netherlands politicians get away with such poor performance.

Because of the long duration, everyone is getting fed up with politics of The Hague and the trust gap with voters expands. For the first time the popularity of Mark Rutte as PM seems to erode. His vast support (VVD got only 25% of the vote but ended first) consist of the elites and highly educated with high income. These people don't flinch with each new scandal as the VVD guarantees corporatism, low taxes for the upper 10% and pressure to limit immigration and promote nationalism.

Dutch media, especially the broadcasters prefer the show above content and never heard of investigative journalism ... with social media that is outdated. Television programs have a high social media content ... what scores today. Ugly and shaking my head for the future generation who will be left behind ... privatization and free market has the priority. No place in politics for visionaries or leadership steering the ship of government into the Roaring Twenties. 😂

by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 12:04:38 PM EST
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by Oui on Sat Oct 9th, 2021 at 02:47:56 PM EST
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His Party Lives Him

by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 03:57:52 PM EST
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by Oui on Thu Oct 7th, 2021 at 02:24:28 PM EST
by Oui on Thu Oct 7th, 2021 at 10:36:26 PM EST

In the meantime at home ... promises, promises and simple chaos in policy. Cabinet of Rutte III resigned due to the childcare benefits scandal where the tax authority accused tens of thousands poor families of fraud. Yet today still little has been achieved to repay debt caused by errors. Yes there is a documentary and the King of Orange showed remorse, but in The Hague leading politicians are full of a restart and call it Rutte IV ...

Child Welfare Scandal Topples Dutch Government | Courthouse News |

by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 11:22:13 AM EST
by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 11:23:09 AM EST
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by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 11:23:49 AM EST
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Translation:

Council for the Judiciary: 'The rule of law did not exist for victims of the allowance affair de facto'

by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 02:09:41 PM EST
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DG Tax Authority Jaap Uijlenbroek committed perjury before Commission of Parliament (Tweede Kamer).

by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 02:10:29 PM EST
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The recovery operation of the childcare allowance affair is in dire straits. This is the conclusion of the National Ombudsman in his report 'Complaint well-founded, but no solution'. The ombudsman examined for the second time how the Implementing Organization for Recovery of Allowances (UHT) handles complaints from parents. The investigation ran from March to July 2021. During that period, the UHT had to process considerably more complaints, but dealt with and finalized fewer.

by Oui on Mon Oct 11th, 2021 at 08:53:49 AM EST
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by Oui on Mon Oct 11th, 2021 at 12:02:37 PM EST
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Dutch PM Mark Rutte a kidnap target for Ridouan Taghi drugs gang | The National News - Sept. 27, 2021 |

Alleged crime boss Taghi rumored to have offered millions to assist in escape from Dutch prison | NL Times - July 10, 2021 |

Earlier diary ...

Money, Drugs, Guns, Liquidation - Love A'dam

The Taghi drugs gang likely organized a contract killing of a most wanted terrorist at the behest of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

by Oui on Fri Oct 8th, 2021 at 08:24:52 PM EST
National interest, corporate interest ... whatever happened to consumer protection in free-market energy and EU directive competitive price forming.

Privatisations in Europe's liberalised electricity markets - the cases of the United Kingdom, Sweden, Germany and France | 2007 |

A Glance at the European Energy Market Liberalization | EconStor - 2013 |

The liberalization of the energy market was a very important step for the energy industry as it has influenced the economy of different countries, but most of all it had a significant impact on both industrial and domestic consumers. Over the last 25 years more and more developed and emerging economies started to streamline the process of privatization, restructuring, reorganization and liberalization in this strategic sector, initially monopolized by the government which took action through price regulation.

Government ownership on the electricity market involves a high level of responsibility. The monopolistic market is characterized by no competition in the sector, market entrance barriers, non- transparent pricing and regulation necessary in order to avoid any abuse of a market dominant position. The government's role is to protect the consumers by keeping the prices at bay and bring a restriction to possible negative effects like produced quantity limits. On the other hand, a liberalized energy market involves higher competition, consumers' right to freely choose their supplier, transparent pricing and encouragement of investments into the energy sector, all of these factors leading to overall consumer welfare.

The final objective of the liberalization process throughout Europe is to create an EU-wide integrated energy market. Though important results have been achieved in the energy market liberalization area in different countries from Europe, the final objective is far from completion and will not be reached soon.

EuroStat: Electricity price statistics 2020

by Oui on Sat Oct 9th, 2021 at 10:49:09 AM EST
by Oui on Sat Oct 9th, 2021 at 10:50:03 AM EST
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Pakistan nuclear scientist AQ Khan, at centre of proliferation scandal, dies | SwissInfo |

He was at the centre of a global nuclear proliferation scandal in 2004 that involved sales of nuclear secrets to North Korea, Iran and Libya. After a confession on national television, Khan was pardoned by then-president Pervez Musharraf but he remained under house arrest for years in his palatial Islamabad home.

In his confession, Khan said he acted alone without the knowledge of the state officials. However, he later said he had been scapegoated.

by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 08:00:19 AM EST
by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 04:25:34 PM EST
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by Oui on Sun Oct 10th, 2021 at 04:27:41 PM EST

Earlier diaries ...

by Oui on Mon Oct 11th, 2021 at 12:12:26 PM EST
First monies for youth care was cut from the national budget and left to the municipalities to organize and provide ... a miserable failure because of poor funding and lack of expertise. Years of struggling ensued with waiting lists for mental care expanding to nearly 12 months. Now this ... 😡

The Dutch Social Support Act in the shadow of the decentralization dream | July 17, 2014 |

by Oui on Mon Oct 11th, 2021 at 12:25:26 PM EST
Netherlands needs better political culture: Council of Europe after childcare allowance scandal

The Council of Europe fiercely criticized the Netherlands' political and official culture in which information is withheld from parliament, and parliamentarians are hindered in their work by pressure from their parties in a yet unpublished report on the childcare allowance scandal. RTL Nieuws and Trouw got a look at the report and wrote about it on Tuesday.

Dutch parliament asked the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe to investigate the functioning of legal protection in the Netherlands following the childcare allowance scandal. Thousands of parents were left with severe financial problems after falsely being labeled fraudsters and having to pay back their childcare allowance. 

The report referred to critical parliamentarians pressured by their parties to remain quiet about this scandal. According to RTL, this happened to then CDA parliamentarian Pieter Omtzigt, SP parliamentarian Renske Leijten, and former VVD MP Helma Lodders. "It should be seen as acceptable and actually normal that MPs from coalition parties represent parliament as an institution and that participating in parliamentary scrutiny is not an act of disloyalty," the report stated.

The Commission was also critical of parliament's role in the discussion of legislation. It recommended including "harshness clauses" in new legislation so that the government can compensate citizens if it turns out they were dealt with too harshly.

by Oui on Tue Oct 12th, 2021 at 04:40:54 PM EST

Cabinet benefit scandal minutes show ministers were irritated by critical MPs

by Oui on Tue Oct 12th, 2021 at 04:54:55 PM EST
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