· Published in RecoveryWatch

REPORT - Polluters profiting from pandemic bailouts

How the fossil fuel industry is using the COVID-19 crisis to capture public funds and lock in-dirty energy

Tomorrow European lawmakers will vote on a new EU Climate Law which has been subject to fierce lobbying by corporate polluters, and campaigners warn that fossil fuel interests are gaining a foothold on the European Green Deal.

Despite European Commission and government promises to "build back better", fossil fuel fingerprints are evident on national and EU recovery plans. Many recovery strategies plan to pour taxpayers’ money into the fossil fuel industry’s favourite false solutions, such as fossil gas, carbon capture and storage (CCS), carbon offsetting, and fossil hydrogen, which will worsen the climate emergency.

This briefing shows that a barrage of lobbying towards EU institutions and governments has opened doors for recovery funds to be diverted to climate-damaging fossil investments. Fossil fuel companies have also been successful in weakening or delaying environmental standards across Europe, while lobbying to delay and weaken the EU climate law.

The fossil fuel industry has been aided by easy access to, and cosy relationships with, high-level decision-makers, with scant regard for conflicts of interest. The Commission’s top levels have had three meetings a week with fossil fuel lobbyists while several European countries were in lockdown.

This report confirms again the enormous influence of the fossil fuel industry on government policies.

To really tackle the climate emergency, and ensure that climate and energy policy is conducted entirely in the public interest, we must cut fossil fuels out of our politics.

  1. To download the English version, click here.
  2. To download the French version, click here.
  3. To download the Italian version, click here

Published by the Fossil Free Politics campaign, wth contrbutions from Corporate Europe Observatory, ODG, Observatoire des multinationales and ReCommon.