European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek and Secretary General Klaus Welle today renewed the institution's commitments to reduce its carbon dioxideThose commitments are pretty impressive. Look what they have achieved already
emissions and make better use of energy, water and paper.
Parliament's key achievements
100% of Parliament's electricity already comes from renewable sources
A 17.4% reduction in carbon emissions per person was achieved between 2006 and 2009. The overall goal is to reduce these emissions by 30% by 2020 (compared to 2006)
More than 55% of waste is recycled or reused
A 17% reduction in paper consumption per person was achieved between 2006 and 2008
Bikes are available to staff in all three places of work
Hybrid and electric vehicles now included in the fleet
1 - How can they tell? The Parliament has three bases in three countries. Its power arrives down a cable from the local energy supplier. In France and Belgium it is true that much comes from Nuclear power. But there is no way that they can tell. Watts don't wander along cables with little flags waving saying 'I come from a wind farm'.
2 - This shouldn't be hard, given that there are bno new building projects going on at present. Buolding being one of the greatest producers of carbon emissions.
3 - Waste is a remarkably nebulous concept. Waste what?
4 - Yes, it is called the internet.
5 - Bikes, oh don't get me started. Up until then people who wanted to ride bikes bought their own. It was a normal thing to do, what with the high wages and all. Now we get subsidised (read taxpayer bought) bicycles. No news about how many have been nicked.
6 - Cars. Oh yes the fleet of cars. For the use of all MEPs. Plus the chauffeur driven cars designated for the heads of groups. Some are hybrids now are they? Oh the moral high ground.
Look, if you ever want to be taken seriously turn off the glaring lights when you are not using them. The place looks light Blackpool pleasure beach on a late summer Friday night.
Oh, and the biggest saving at all. Stop going to Strasbourg.