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Greens welcome possible end to 'merry-go-round' European Parliament

Molly Scott Cato, the lead Green Party candidate in next year’s European elections has welcomed a vote by the European Parliament's Constitutional Affairs Committee to scrap the monthly 'merry-go-round' of holding meetings in both Brussels and Strasbourg.

The Green Party has long campaigned for an end to the practice, which sees up to 5,000 lawmakers and parliamentary staff travel some 550 miles from Brussels to Strasbourg and back each month. Greens say this is costly, produces massive carbon emissions and adds unnecessary workloads on staff [1].

Molly Scott Cato said: 'In a time when the EU budget is under pressure it is absurd  that money is spent moving law-makers backwards and forwards between two European cities, and that two sets of offices are maintained. As Greens what is perhaps even more important to us is the totally unnecessary production of carbon dioxide that the current arrangement entails.'

The 55-strong Green group in the European Parliament [2] are now hoping that all MEPs will back a move to centralise decision-making in one place when the issue is debated by the full European Parliament next month.


[1] European Parliament two-seat operation: Environmental costs, transport and energy' (2007)

[2] The Greens / European Free Alliance have 55 members in the European Parliament and are the fourth largest group

Molly Scott Cato is the lead European candidate for the Green Party in the South West. She is an internationally renowned green economist and is the Green Party National Finance Speaker

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