US-Fracking-Industrie und EU arbeiten global

How Europe Promotes Fracking in Latin America

A pro-fracking report from the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly (EuroLat) is the latest step in the global push towards fracking, with the United States at the vanguard.

The global push for unconventional gas and shale petroleum extraction has been promoted from its beginning by the United States government. Under the concept of energy security, the Obama administration designed a strong foreign policy agenda linked to a diversification of energy sources – nuclear, biofuels, and other alternatives – with shale, or ‘fracked’ gas, having a central role. Documents filtered by Wikileaks and Mother Jones show how the authorities encouraged fracking around the world through the Department of State and its Unconventional Gas Technical Engagement Program. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (2009-2013) traveled to Romania, Poland, and Bulgaria looking to promote the development of unconventional energy and to fight against prohibitions on hydraulic fracking. A similar situation occurred during the Latin American tour of then U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy, Daniel Poneman, in May 2014. Traveling through Chile and Colombia, Poneman visited Argentina to sign an “agreement for energy cooperation.” The Frente para la Victoria legislative block made its objectives clear in the Energy Commission of the Chamber of Deputies: “The financing that the North American businesses offer is one of the principal interests behind the agreement, for encouraging investments (…) In this sense, the agreement will be used for the exchange of experiences and the transfer of technology.” U.S. intervention in favor of shale was even more explicit in Mexico, where a strong lobby was deployed to support unconventional energy sources in the context of Mexico’s energy reform.

In this way, in the last five years, various international initiatives – either bilateral or in multilateral free trade agreements like the Transatlantic Agreement between the European Union and the United States – have unfolded amidst a delicate geopolitical chess match in which the US aims to secure the control of as much oil and gas as possible with an eye toward the global exhaustion of these same resources. Nevertheless, the most significant effort at multilateral public promotion of fracking has been that of the Euro-Latin American Parliamentary Assembly. Created in 2006, this body, known as EuroLat, gathers legislators from both continents who seek to influence trade and social policies in the regions.[..]

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