You’ll hear a lot from UKIP this month about ‘EU regulation’ and how dreadful it is.
So it’s good to have Linda remind us just what EU regulation means.
In this case the Tobacco Products Directive – which has finally passed into law – in spite of the delaying tactics of the Tobacco Industry.
The sheer size of the EU means that its clout can outweigh the power of multinationals – like the Tobacco Lobby – whose power over national governments like ours is significant.
So here’s a triumph for democratically elected MEPs over Big Money – thank to the EU.
And a victory for our children, too.
As Linda points out
‘”With 2 children taking up smoking for every hour that plain packaging is delayed, the government cannot afford to drag its heels.”
The bad news is that Linda’s efforts to harness EU funds to save Kellingley Pit in Yorkshire have failed – thanks to the Tory/LibDem Government’s rejection of EU aid.
You’ll have read about Linda’s petition to save this last deep drift pit in Yorkshire on this website – maybe you even signed it.
The petition was just part of Linda’s efforts.
And, once again, it was EU money she was able to call on to try to save the pit.
She organised meetings between mining unions representatives and officials from the European Commission to explore options to keep the pit open until 2018, which you may have seen on Look North.
But in typical fashion,the UK government has rejected an aid package up to 2018 and is now planning to run the pit down with a closure date in 2015.
As Linda says
‘This is very disappointing news. On an average day, 40% of the UK’s energy comes from burning coal, yet now virtually all of it will come from coal imports. This Government has squandered every opportunity to keep our own mines open and dithered over investments in clean coal technology such as carbon capture and storage (CCS). The policy is a disaster not just in terms of local jobs, but also for our climate change policies since we will continue to burn huge quantities of imported fossil fuel without any co2 emission abatement technology on our power stations. ‘
This is not the first time this Tory/LibDem Coalition has rejected EU aid – it recently rejected EU aid for flood defences.
All of which makes it doubly important that you vote in the EU elections on May 22 – and send a clear message that you want the UK to make good use of its EU membership.
Linda has been doing a great job for Yorkshire and the Humber.
Make sure she has more Labour colleagues to help her come May 23.
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