Thursday, August 13, 2015 - 10:18
Parliament split on North Sea gas exploration
Minister Henk Kamp of Economic Affairs' plans to extract more gas from gas fields in the North Sea have the Tweede Kamer, lower house of parliament, divided. The VVD and PVV support the plan, the PvdA and GroenLinks are solidly against it. Other parties are on the fence. The VVD, Kamp's own party, is all for the plan. According to MP Andre Bosman, the gas has to come from somewhere, especially now that gas production in Groningen is slowing down. "Production at sea is a serious option", he said, the Volkskrant reports. The PVV also fully supports the plan. PvdA Parliamentarian Jan Vos pointed out that the International Monetary Fund recently criticized the subsidized extraction of fossil fuels. "I find it surprising that the Minister intends to grant subsidies to companies that extract antiquated and expensive fossil fuels. The IMF only just said that it is unwise. The PvdA is also against it." GroenLinks is also against gas extraction in the North Sea. The other parties have not made up their minds yet. The CDA "understands the minister's choice", but wants to know what it would mean for his ambitions with renewable energy. The SP can support Kamp if it means more and quicker relief for Groningen, but adds that if it is more expensive than buying gas from Russia, the plans are "absurd". The D66 is cautiously positive.