Netherlands leaves controversial energy treaty

Netherlands leaves controversial energy treaty


NOS . News

  • Judith van de Holbeck

    Climate & Energy Editor

  • Judith van de Holbeck

    Climate & Energy Editor

The Netherlands is withdrawing from the controversial Energy Pact Treaty. This was announced by Climate Minister Cetin in a debate in the House of Representatives. According to Jetten, the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) is not in line with the Paris Climate Agreement, and the ECT stands in the way of achieving the ‘one-and-a-half degree target’.

The 1994 treaty aims to strengthen international cooperation in the energy sector. It is controversial because, on the basis of the treaty, fossil energy producers can submit claims to governments if they are disadvantaged by climate policy. They can claim compensation not only for investments, but also for lost income. This leads to high claims.

For example, recently Italy had to pay 240 million euros to the British oil company Rockhopper, because it had to stop drilling for oil off the Italian coast. There is also a claim by the German energy company RWE against the Dutch state. This company wants 1.4 billion euros from the Netherlands due to the closure of the coal-fired power plants in Maasvlakte in 2030.

Recently, environmental organizations have advocated ECT He left. Climate activist Greta Thunberg also made such an appeal:

‘ECT is a guarantee for companies that license to work In the discussion, Van Ran said: “We lost a long time ago. The fossil remains protected for the next decade. This is strange and represents a big finger in the future.”

Modifications are not enough

In response to criticism, the treaty is being updated; There are currently various amendments on the table that would limit the protection of fossil fuel companies. According to Minister Cetin, the amendments are not enough. He now prefers to withdraw from the treaty with all the EU member states of the treaty at the same time. If it is not possible to reach an agreement on this, the Netherlands will exit on its own, Gettin said. Italy, Poland and Spain have already withdrawn from the treaty.

If the Netherlands leaves ECT, all current and future claims will not be withdrawn. in the treaty”sunset item‘which enables fossil companies to claim investments twenty years after leaving ECT.

It is not yet known when the Netherlands will leave ECT. The Cabinet will later issue an extended letter to Parliament on the matter. On November 22, all ECT members will meet in Mongolia to vote on treaty amendments.

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