EU Member States in the European Council have today agreed to start negotiating a new EU-US trade deal.
The talks were de facto approved despite promises by French President Macron and EU Trade Commissioner Malmström that the EU would not negotiate a trade agreement with countries that have not signed the Paris agreement on climate change.
Mute Schimpf, trade campaigner at Friends of the Earth Europe commented:
"This decision is a slap in the face for the hundreds of thousands of young people and adults who are now protesting weekly for climate action across Europe. With European elections looming, it is outrageous that our political representatives are prioritising short-term profits for a few over preventing the worst effects of climate breakdown. EU governments should take the Paris agreement seriously and refuse to negotiate with its most prominent holdout.”
The final vote is expected for the Council meeting on Monday, 15 April.
More than 100 civil society groups worldwide have called on politicians to stop climate-damaging trade and bring about a safer, fairer, and cleaner Europe.
The previous round of EU-US trade negotiations towards the transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP) saw Europe-wide protests and millions of signatures to a petition demanding an end to the talks.