Parliamentary question - E-004021/2011Parliamentary question

Funding of German ecologists by Nord Stream

Question for written answer E-004021/2011
to the Commission
Rule 117
Michał Tomasz Kamiński (ECR)

According to information published on 6 April 2011 by the daily newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza, the heads of German environmental organisations who were avowed opponents of the Nord Stream gas pipeline project hold management positions in the Conservation Foundation German Baltic, which is sponsored by Nord Stream.

This foundation was set up by the authorities of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, WWF Germany, BUND (Friends of the Earth), and NABU (Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union), together with Nord Stream, controlled by the Gazprom consortium, which is carrying out the work to lay the north European pipeline on the Baltic seabed.

Nord Stream, which is one of the Foundation’s sponsors, has invested a total of EUR 10 million in it. Jochen Lamp, head of WWF Germany, is the Foundation’s chairman, and Corinna Cwielag, head of BUND, is deputy chairman. The Foundation’s board of trustees will be chaired by a representative of Nord Stream, and its members will include representatives of the above environmental organisations.

This has aroused suspicions because until very recently, WWF and BUND were extremely radical opponents of the north European gas pipeline project in Germany, and had gone as far as bringing legal proceedings against the authorisation to lay the pipeline in German territorial waters. These organisations have dropped this action since Nord Stream has promised funding for environmental protection.

In view of the above, can the Commission say whether it is aware of the above circumstances? If so, what is its opinion on this matter? If not, does the Commission intend to look into this situation? What means are available to the Commission to respond if it discovers a conflict of interest between the various parties involved in the activities of the above foundation, or if it suspects corruption?

OJ C 314 E, 27/10/2011