EU Intends to Privatise the “Basis of all Life”
As with all raw materials is water is also not indefinitely available. If water becomes a commodity in the conventional sense, it means: increasing demand will decrease the quantity available and prices will rise.
This results in opportunities for the ‘market’ to achieve high rates of return. In Germany we are on the way to becoming less dependent on oil and developing alternatives for a stable energy supply. This is existentially necessary for a modern society. Analysts therefore classify the raw material “water”, in the long run, as being more lucrative as investments in the energy market. Hidden in a directive, the European Commission wanted to put through a project for “water privatization” almost unnoticed. The innocuous-sounding title: “Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on Concessions” but there is something more to it.
It is about nothing less than the promotion of the privatization of water resources. Already, the EU promotes the privatization of water utilities in the indebted countries. The supposed saviors (Troika) are forcing Portugal and Greece to sell their drinking water utilities. The first water works in Greece (Athens and Thessaloniki) are to be sold. Portugal will be forced to sell the water operation “Aquas”. The citizens in Portugal already are feeling the first effects with price increases up to 400% and a loss of quality. Should the Commission persist with their plans, the common property ‘water’ – other than in a decision of the UN – will become the subject of speculation.
This process is advanced and supported by a huge big business lobbyist machine, Nestlé. The global corporation is on the starting blocks and putting on the pressure. The German TV program ‘Monitor’ has already reported about it on 13.12.2012. On the home page ‘Water is a human right’, everyone can support the planned European Citizens Initiative, “Water and Basic Sanitation is a Human Right! Water is a public good and not a commodity! Support it. An example of where privatization can lead can be seen in Berlin. After the water supply was privatized in Berlin significant price increases were seen which, in 2012, led the Berlin Senate to buy the shares of the private supplier back again.
Bernd Schreiner, candidate for the Bundestag and environmental speaker from Thuringia, says on the subject: “Water and the municipal supply are basic elements of the basic services humans need. We firmly reject a commercialization by means of a European-wide tendering of the drinking waters supply. The local citizen is dependent on the local water supply and thus bound to a drinking water supply. It is more important to design citizen-oriented local utility companies provide by municipal regulations. The water supply and management must be crystal-clearly there for the local citizens on a not-for-profit basis. The grasping for the element of life by large corporations increases the cost of supply while simultaneously degrading the quality. Investments are made according to quarterly reports, and not according to the requirements of a high quality water supply. At the end of the privatization process only the companies, whose profits the public have to provide, benefit. “
So it is appropriate that the United Nations General Assembly has declared the year 2013 as the “International Year of Water Cooperation”. Various working groups of the Pirate Party Germany, for example the WG Agriculture and the Brandenburg WG Environment and Energy Policy, are planning a day of action on World Water Day. The various branches are invited to participate actively with information booths or other actions. The deadline for this is the 22.03.2013. In the “Bochum Resolutions” the formal positions of the German Pirates on the topic of “Privatization of water” can be found.
You can get more information about the subject at the right2water.eu website.
This article was translated from a post in our sister publication The Flaschenpost which is affiliated with the Pirate Party of Germany written by Manfred Liedtke.
Featured image: by Andrea Danani CC BY
About Andrew Reitemeyer
I joined the Pirate Party of Lower Saxony in Germany in April 2012, once I found out that non citizens were welcome to join and become active members of the Party. I joined the Pirate Times soon after it was started as a proof reader and am now an editor and author. Since then I have returned to my native New Zealand and joined the Pirate Party of New Zealand. Politically I come from the libertarian left and have, up to now, not regarded any political party as having a solution for the democratic deficit that envelops the world. With the advent of the Pirate Party, which truly embraces grass roots democracy, I have found a political home. The Pirate Times is a way I can contribute to furthering the Pirate Movement around the world. Skype: frithogar