Latest research by the Taxpayers Alliance has disclosed that major environmentalist groups have received nearly €100 million via EU funding since 1997 under the LIFE+ programme. Britain’s contribution to this figure is around £7.5 million which could rise if the EU’s plans to increase its budget are not vetoed. Over 19 groups have received more than £1 million in subsidies, including Friends of the Earth, the recipients of £6 million, who brought legal action against the British Government over cuts in solar subsidies.
Roger Helmer, Member of the European Parliament for the East Midlands and UKIP Spokesman on Energy and Industry, has slammed the EU’s actions and called for an end to taxpayer funding of politically motivated campaign groups.
Helmer said: “We’re already paying through the nose for green taxes and wind farm subsidies, and now we find we are also paying for the green lobby groups who promote these ruinous policies in the first place. Taxpayers’ money should not be used to promote extreme green agendas which many taxpayers do not agree with.”
“What we have here is an extreme example of taxpayers’ money being used by the EU to fund organisations which it will then pretend to be independent supporters of its own wishes. These groups have every right to exist, of course. But they should not receive another penny of subsidy. If they have support in the general public, let them find it. If not, then they have no right influencing EU decisions.”