Week Ahead 9 - 13 October 2023

Euro 7 emission standards; Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought 2023: Vote on a shortlist of 3 candidates; How can geothermal energy be better exploited in the EU?; Conference: Death Penalty for a sharing a song?

Euro 7 emission standards

On Thursday morning, the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) will vote on a report prepared by ECR Rapporteur Alexandr Vondra concerning Euro 7 emission standards. This report is a vital component of the European Commission’s Green Deal initiative and aims to establish more stringent emission standards for all petrol and diesel vehicles, including cars, vans, lorries, and buses, as part of the transition towards achieving CO2 neutrality and zero-emission vehicles by 2035. As Euro 7 covers pollutant emissions from brakes and tyres, as well as battery durability standards, it also imposes requirements on electric vehicles. ECR rapporteur Alexandr Vondra has brokered an agreement on a set of compromise amendments that strike a balance between advancing environmental goals and addressing the interests of manufacturers and consumers. After the ENVI committee’s vote, a plenary vote is then scheduled for the November mini-session in Brussels.

When: Thursday @ 10:00

Where: ANTALL 4Q2

Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought 2023: Vote on a shortlist of 3 candidates

On Thursday, the Foreign Affairs Committee (AFET), the Development Committee (DEVE) and the Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI) will vote jointly on the shortlist for the 2023 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought. The ECR Group has nominated the pro-European people of Georgia together with Nino Lomjaria, former Public Defender of Georgia. Georgians have repeatedly stood up for their country, fought hard for their rights and aspirations, positively influenced government decisions and formed the core of the country’s resilience. During her tenure as Georgia’s Public Defender, Nino Lomjaria has successfully defended the rights of those who fled the Russian-occupied regions of Georgia, as well as ethnic and religious minorities, and has strengthened the protection of human rights, particularly for children and persons with disabilities. The vote will be held in camera.

When: Thursday @ 8:00

Where: SPAAK 1A002

How can geothermal energy be better exploited in the EU?

On Tuesday, Professor Zdzisław Krasnodębski, ECR MEP and INI Rapporteur for the Geothermal Initiative Report, together with EGEC Geothermal, will host a hearing on the use of geothermal energy in Europe. Geothermal energy offers a permanent, weather-independent supply of renewable baseload electricity, heat, free cooling, seasonal heat and power storage as well as the most sustainable means of extracting lithium and other raw materials. Yet it accounts for only 2 per cent of final electricity and heat production. The event provides an opportunity to identify the most effective means of promoting geothermal energy in the EU.

Speakers include:

Dr Piotr Dziadzio, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Climate and Environment, Poland

Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice-President, European Commission (tbc)

Professor Zdzisław Krasnodębski ECR MEP and INI Rapporteur on Geothermal Energy

Pernille Weiss EPP MEP and INI shadow rapporteur on Geothermal Energy

Niels Fuglsang S&D MEP and INI shadow rapporteur on Geothermal Energy

Mr Olivier Racle, Director, Heating and Cooling Networks, ENGIE

Ms Cindy Demichel, CEO, Celsius

Mr Asbjørn Haugstrup, External Relations Officer, Innargi

Mr Horst Kreuter, Managing Director, Vulcan Energy Resources GmbH

Ms Bruna Campos, Euronatur

On Thursday, the own-initiative report will be discussed in the Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE). The ECR Group is very supportive of geothermal energy and calls on Member States to remove existing barriers to the implementation of geothermal projects (in particular permits, insurance, access to finance, skills). The ECR believes that the Commission could help to facilitate cooperation on this by creating a geothermal alliance.


When: Tuesday @ 11:00

Where: SPAAK 1A002

Examination of the INI report:

When: Thursday @ 11:00

Where: ANTALL 4Q1

Conference: Death Penalty for a sharing a song?

On Thursday afternoon, ECR MEP Bert-Jan Ruissen and EPP MEP Miriam Lexmann will hold a conference concerning freedom of belief in Nigeria. The conference will focus more specifically on the situation of the Islamic gospel musician from Northern-Nigeria, Yahaya Sharif-Aminu. In 2020, Mr Sharif-Aminu was brought before an upper Sharia court in Kano State, Nigeria, where he was sentenced to death by hanging for alleged blasphemy in a song that he composed and circulated via Whatsapp containing alleged derogatory comments regarding the Prophet Muhammad. Mr Sharif-Aminu’s lawyer, Kola Alapinni, is a guest speaker at the conference, which will take place from 14:00 - 15:30 in room SPINELLI 1G2.

Register for the event here.

When: Thursday @ 14:00


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