Documents leak by Greenpeace could spell end for controversial TTIP deal

The leak reveals how US corporations could hold sway over EU protections on consumers and the environment

LAST UPDATED: 2 May, 2016 @ 16:01
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12/07/2014 - Protests against the EU-US trade deal (TTIP - Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) outside Europe House, the London Headquarters of the European Commission and the European Parliament, in Smith Square, London. A puppeteer on stilts with a 'puppet' dressed as an NHS nurse to highlight the threat the deal poses to public services like the NHS.

HUNDREDS of documents leaked by Greenpeace could spell the end for the controversial Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership deal between the US and EU.

The 248-page leak reveal how US corporations could hold sway over EU protections on consumers and the environment.

Greenpeace say the documents reveal how the US wants to replace the EU’s ‘precautionary principle’ on potentially harmful products with the more relaxed US standard, which seeks to manage risks rather than avoid them altogether.

The principle can currently demand manufacturers to prove a product bears no danger to consumers or the environment.

It applies to products such as genetically modified organisms (GMO’s), which are widely used in the US but whose risks to the ecosystem and food chain remain a source of fierce debate in the EU.

Under the agreement, the EU would have to notify the US and its corporations based in the EU of any changes to similar regulations.

US companies would consequently have the same input and sway over EU regulations as their European counterparts.

But the European Commission says the documents reflect negotiating positions, not any final outcome, while EU’s chief negotiator described some of Greenpeace’s arguements as “flatly wrong”.

Supporters of the deal say it will bring more than $100 billion of economic gains to both the US and the EU, but campaigners argue it will hand too much power to businesses at the expense of national governments and consumers.

They also point out how the leaked texts fail to mention the global committment to reduce CO2 emissions, which were agreed at last year’s Paris Summit on global warming.

This is despite promises from the European Commission that it would make environmental sustainability a key component of any trade deal.

Campaigners now say the talks, which have been held almost entirely in secret, are on the rocks following the leak.

“The TTIP negotiations will never survive this leak,” War on Want’s executive director John Hillary said, “The only way that the European Commission has managed to keep the negotiations going so far is through complete secrecy as to the actual details of the deal under negotiation.

Now we can see the details for ourselves, and they are truly shocking. This is surely the beginning of the end for this much hated deal.”

 



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12 COMMENTS

  1. The real reason for Obama’s visit to Europe – to put pressure on Merkel to bully the other EU States into compliance with the USA’s commercial wishes.

    That’s why he had to visit the UK first to make sure they pushed the USA line and that’s the reason they want us inside the EU. Only idiots think they have our or Europe’s best interests in mind

  2. Greenpeace is hardly a reliable source of information regarding GM technology. Greenpeace funded Dr Serelini, the scientist who used cancer prone rats to show GMO food causes cancer. That study was retracted when scientists pointed out the obvious flaws in the study. Despite the retraction, Greenpeace still use that discredited study to block GM crops globally, as happened recently in the Philippines. Meanwhile each year hundreds of thousands die due to crop failures or vitamin deficiencies while the modern bio agricultural solution is forced by the scare tactics of organisations like Greenpeace. GM crops reduce pesticide use, require less land and with crops like SUSIBA2 rice can drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Greenpeace: Allowing ideology to prevent a technology that achieves their own stated goals.

  3. Sean Whitten – now be honest and reveal your corporate and political interests – read the daily Mail do you.
    Greenpeace is not and never has been any shade of politics as well you know but it certainly is a bloody thorn in the side of big business.

  4. It’s understandable that the proponents of GM are enthusiastic about its introduction/use. Understandable because vast fortunes stand to be made and great power to be wielded.
    But what does Greenpeace have to gain by demanding proof of its safety? Many claims and statistics are waved around in favour of GM, but the same was true of tobacco not so long ago.

  5. And on queue, the GMO supporters go straight for the shill card. I work for a small business that employs just 6 staff. Which multi-million organic food conglomerate is paying you to comment? How about, I’ve lived most of my life in areas where farming are major industries and I’ve studied science. A good understanding of science makes being pro-GMO very easy.

    If Greenpeace doesn’t believe the 88% of scientists who agree GMO crops are safe, why do they believe the 87% of scientists that say global warming is being accelerated by humans? If Greenpeace is so concerned about food safety, why don’t they block cross-breeding, mutagenesis and other breeding methods that are actually less controlled and more likely to produce poor outcomes. Remember the Lenape potato?

    Why has Greenpeace spent 20 years blocking Golden Rice. You know, the vitamin A enriched rice created by a university and being given FREE to farmers in South East Asia to combat the hundreds of thousands of children that die every year from vitamin A deficiency and related conditions. Why are they trying to block vitamin A enriched bananas to do the same in Africa. Again, created in a university and to be made freely available.

    GMO supporters are trying to improve food security for those who in most need, but the anti crowd with their false claims of shill, unsafe and corporate greed need to be stopped. While the organic food industry (and Greenpeace) keep peddling this false fears, children are dying. I guess children’s lives are less important to Greenpeace than their scientifically unsupported ideology or the organic food industry’s push for market share.

    • More “statistics”, more emotive “Justifications”. All anyone, including Greenpeace want, is proof of safety. Throwing the “organic” red-herring in, is another dead cat on the table. (Mixed metaphors, I know!) You ask plenty of questions Sean, but no answer as to why Greenpeace would lie.
      Why tar Greenpeace with the same brush as the Spanish movement Jane? You know full well who is to blame for the bulldozers and it’s not a few banner-wavers in hemp shirts.

  6. I am of the opinion that nobody should mess with what nature does and that includes feeding starving children. The Ethiopians were dying of drought and starvation in the 1960’s and have had at least two more bouts (Geldoff-era and after) yet we still try to feed them. If I lived there I wouldn’t be having 8 children to work the land for me without the expectation that I might lose some if the sh£$ hit’s the fan every 10 years.

  7. Sean Whitten,
    none of your argument deals with the real, indeed the only problem facing this planet overbreeding by the dominant species – man.

    Ethiopia – population 1900 – 11.6million / pop. 1960 23.6 million / pop. 2016 101 million. median age 2016 – 18.9 years.

    There is absolutely no need for GM food but there absolutely is a need for population control. Neither the religious nor political freaks ever mention population control.
    It certainly is’nt in the interests of Monsanto is it Sean?

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