On 3 October 2023, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission Maroš Šefčovič appeared before the European Parliament to answer questions coming from Members on the main item of his competence, namely, the so-called “European Green Deal”.
Unfortunately, Mr. Šefčovič did not provide much information, but rather a collection of clichés that could hardly convince anyone.
He started by defending legislative initiatives that the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) Group considers highly damaging on the economy: the Nature Restoration Law and the new rules on packaging that abandon the previous model of recycling for that of reusing.
Furthermore, the Commission Vice-President defended the Ecodesign for Sustainable Products Regulation, whereas we would prefer less regulation to reduce administrative burden and promote growth.
A fourth piece of EU regulatory material was praised by the Slovak bureaucrat – the Critical Raw Materials Act, supposedly reducing our dependencies. However, how the concept of “open strategy” will enhance raw materials autonomy remains to be seen. A child would quickly understand that they are contradictory items and therefore their mixing amounts to a bizarre ceremony of confusion.
Mr. Šefčovič goes on to defend animal welfare as an objective where he has put “his team of Green Deal Commissioners” to work. We would recommend that the Commission human resources be put to work on human welfare, workers welfare, enterprise welfare and nations welfare.
Apparently, this autumn he will focus on wind power and so he explains. This seems logical, as autumn and winter are typically seasons when the wind blows; it would seem quite original to focus on sun (or sand, as the briefing goes) between the months of October and Easter.
Engagement with citizens, according to the Commission VP, will be manifested through the Just Transition Fund. This fund actually heals some of the wounds caused by the Green Transition and the Green Deal. At the end of the day, the Commission is causing a problem to citizens and then pretending to engage with them in order to partially pay for the damage inflicted.
Moreover, Mr. Šefčovič has promised to organise “green social dialogues” with citizens, in order to strengthen public support for the Green Deal. In other words, public support for boss Von der Leyen’s Green Deal badly needs some vitamin, including in the form of sermons, or time badly spent.
He praises the car industry as the “crown jewel” of the European economy, but fails to give accurate figures of what the plan would be to protect it from competitors in other world areas. The only provided figures refer to renewable energy. Because in 2050 everything needs to be electric as imposed by Von der Leyen and her minions, we shall need to have in Europe “2 to 3 times more electricity power generation than we have right now”.
Nevertheless, he calls this putting the European economy on a firm path towards reducing costs for citizens. Triplicating electricity power generation will reduce costs for citizens? Nobody can believe such wishful thinking. And yet he states that the Green Deal will bring “tangible and intangible benefits” to citizens in Europe.
At least, the super-Commissioner recognises sovereign prerogatives and technological neutrality when talking about nuclear energy. This is implicitly qualified as a low-carbon source of energy, and the 12 Member States which are currently operating nuclear power plants are not finger pointed.
Together with photovoltaics and wind, hydrogen is portrayed as the industry of the future. The hearing ends with a naïve eccentricity: Mr. Šefčovič declares his enthusiasm for cycling as a means of transportation on the altar of the EU religion. And indeed we managed to find a picture, albeit small, where he can be seen on two wheels.
Overall, as a consequence of this exchange between the European Commission and some Members of the European Parliament, the reader will be able to easily decide for himself if the Green Deal and his main acolyte can be taken seriously.