As said oft in the past, and as early as 2013, the EU is the next world superpower to take the stage. Despite the difficulties it’s facing, the solution to all of its problems brought forth by the eurocrats is always further integration. It may very well still break up, but there will be a core leftover. The United States of Europe is around the corner, led by Germany’s Fourth Reich under an EU guise, along with its European Army.
The European Commission is proposing to finance parts of its proposed defence fund with money originally allocated to energy, environmental and scientific programmes.
The EU’s executive announced its plan to subsidise research and procurement of high-end defence technologies on Wednesday (7 June), but the origin of the money has gone largely under-reported.
In 2019 and 2020, the commission wants to redirect €145 million that was originally allocated to the Connecting Europe Facility, a programme aimed at integrating European energy markets, increasing energy security, protecting the environment, and promoting interoperability of digital service infrastructures.
Of that sum, €40 million was supposed to go to projects that contribute to “sustainable development and protection of the environment”.
The redirection has irked some environmental groups.
“If it’s correct that the European Commission is proposing to divert funds earmarked for environmental and climate protection to the defence industry – as appears to be the case – this is a new low,” said Magda Stoczkiewicz, director of Friends of the Earth Europe.
“The security of humankind depends on having a liveable climate and healthy planet,” Stoczkiewicz told EUobserver in a written statement.
“More funds, not less, are urgently needed to bring about the transition to a clean, sustainable energy system. In this crucial period when the future of Europe is in the spotlight, the EU institutions needs to demonstrate they are focused on the health of people and planet, not on the interests of the defence industry.”
However, it is not the first time that Jean-Claude Juncker’s commission has redirected funds from the CEF, set up during his predecessor Jose Manuel Barroso, to other priorities.
A separate, large-scale investment programme, called the Juncker fund, was funded by redirecting €6 billion from CEF, as well as another EU fund, the research & development programme Horizon 2020.
The EU defence fund will not take money from Horizon 2020, but scientific programmes will be affected, if member states and MEPs agree with the commission’s proposal.
The commission wants to take €80 million in 2019 and €50 million in 2020 from funds originally promised to Europe’s satellite navigation programme Galileo.
Galileo, a €5-billion project by the EU and by the intergovernmental European Space Agency, is Europe’s answer to GPS, and an attempt to no longer rely on that US-owned technology.
Commission promises no delays
In a response, the European Commission defended the reshuffling of budgets.
“With the European Defence Fund, we are delivering on president Juncker’s commitment to increase the security of our citizens, and responding to the mandate by the European Council of December 2016,” said EU commission spokeswoman Lucia Caudet.
The European Council is the regular summit of EU government leaders.
Full article: EU environment and science money moved to military fund (euobserver)