Brussels – Thirty-five Greenpeace activists who took part in a protest against EU energy policies at an EU summit in Brussels this morning are being released by police after being held in custody for several hours. The climbers from six European countries – Germany, Belgium, the UK, France, the Netherlands and Switzerland –voluntarily gave themselves up to police. It is as yet unclear what charges they will face.
Photos & videos of the action can be downloaded here.
Early on Friday morning, amid tight security, activists unfurled giant banners blaming Europe’s largest energy companies for fuelling the EU’s dependence on energy imports .
Commenting on the outcome of discussions between EU leaders on measures to reduce Europe’s dependence on energy imports, Greenpeace EU energy policy adviser Frederic Thoma said: “On paper this summit has recognised the importance of energy efficiency and renewables to free Europe of its reliance on expensive and polluting energy from places like Russia. The next summit in October will have to do better to turn nice words into tough action in the face of stiff resistance from big energy companies.”
In October, EU leaders are due to discuss concrete measures to reduce energy dependence, as well as new targets to boost renewables, increase energy efficiency and cut carbon emissions by 2030.
On the probable appointment of Jean-Claude Juncker as the new president of the European Commission, Thoma said: “Juncker can hardly be worse than the last Commission president. He has recently made some positive statements – for example by positioning himself against nuclear energy and fracking – but we will judge him on his actions. We hope that he can help deliver the change that Europe needs to regain its global leadership role on the environment.”
 For more information on the action: Greenpeace press release, 27 June 2014.
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Greenpeace is an independent global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace. Greenpeace does not accept donations from governments, the EU, businesses or political parties.