PRESS RELEASE – Strasbourg, 23 October 2012
European Parliament seat
MEPs push for solution to multi-seat EP operation and for parliament to have a say
MEPs today proposed ending the European Parliament’s multi-seat operation in order to deliver savings for the EU budget and for the EP to be given the power to decide on its own place of operation (1). Green MEPs welcomed the vote, which gives a clear political signal to EU governments to stop ignoring the issue.
Commenting on the vote, Green budget spokesperson, Helga Trüpel, said:
« MEPs have today voted in favour of a common sense proposal to end the parliament’s multi-seat operation, with a view to delivering significant direct savings to the EU budget. The vote is also an expression of frustration with the current situation by which parliament is denied a say on its own place of operation, with EU governments retaining sole decision-making power and the continued failure of the EP to hold a plenary debate.
« Although the two largest political groups want to practice omerta, it is also high time for the EP to end its taboo and debate the issue of a single seat for the parliament. The Greens have pushed for such a debate for years and will continue to do so through the EP’s Conference of Presidents.
« The practise of shifting thousands of people and resources from place to place is not only costly, inefficient, wasteful and environmentally-damaging (2), it also damages the public perception of the EU. The EP has today sent a clear political signal that action can no longer avoided. »
(1) MEPs endorsed a number of amendments to this end in the vote on the EU budget for 2013.
(2) See the study commissioned by the Greens/EFA group on the environmental impact of the multi-seat operation, which leads to an excess 20,000 tonnes of CO2 per year being emitted.