by Deirdre Fulton
May 02, 2016
announced a €100,000
"bounty" for the full TTIP text.
The secret documents
represent roughly two-thirds
of the latest negotiating text,
and in several cases
expose for the first time
the position of the U.S.
Confirming that the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment
amounts to "a huge transfer of power from people to big business,"
Greenpeace Netherlands on Monday leaked 248 secret pages of the
controversial trade deal between the U.S. and EU, exposing how
environmental regulations, climate protections, and consumer rights
are being "bartered away behind closed doors."
The documents represent roughly two-thirds of the latest negotiating
text, according to Greenpeace, and on some topics offer for the
first time the position of the United States.
"Total secrecy was the only way
the European Commission
could keep the European people
from learning the truth
about these appalling
and now the cat is out of the
War on Want
Before Monday, elected
representatives were only able to view such documents under guard,
in a secure room, without access to expert consultation, while being
forbidden from discussing the content with anyone else.
This secrecy runs "counter to the
democratic principles of both the EU and the U.S.," the website
And in the absence of transparency,
"hard won environmental progress is
being bartered away behind closed doors,"
said Faiza Oulahsen, campaigner for Greenpeace Netherlands.
"Whether you care about
environmental issues, animal welfare, labor rights or internet
privacy, you should be concerned about what is in these leaked
documents," Oulahsen said.
"They underline the strong
objections civil society and millions of people around the world
have voiced: TTIP is about a huge transfer of democratic power
from people to big business.
We call on all elected
representative and other concerned parties to read these
documents and engage in the debate."
zeroes in on four aspects of serious concern in the obtained
the apparent omission of the
so-called "General Exceptions rule," which allows nations to
regulate trade "to protect human, animal and plant life or
health" or for "the conservation of exhaustible natural
the absence of language about
climate protection, plus provisions that would "stimulate
imports and exports of fossil fuels - like shale gas from
fracking or oil from tar sands - while clean energy
production for local communities and associations would be
considered unfair competition and a barrier to trade"
a clear threat to the
"precautionary principle," which requires regulatory caution
where there is scientific doubt, shifting the burden of
proof on whether a product is safe to public authorities,
not on those who seek to sell it
the heretofore shrouded "high
degree" of corporate influence over the talks
According to the
Guardian, which saw the original documents (retyped by
Greenpeace and available at
TTIP - Greenpeace Netherlands Released Secret
U.S. proposals include an obligation
on the EU to inform its industries of any planned regulations in
advance, and to allow them the same input into EU regulatory
processes as European firms.
American firms could influence the
content of EU laws at several points along the regulatory line,
including through a plethora of proposed technical working
groups and committees.
"These leaks confirm what
millions of people across Europe have suspected all along -
that this toxic trade deal is essentially an enormous
corporate power grab,"
said Global Justice Now trade campaigner Guy Taylor on
"It's no secret that the
negotiations have been on increasingly shaky ground," Taylor
petitions signed by millions of Europeans and
ongoing public protests.
"These leaks should be seen as
another nail in the coffin of a toxic trade deal that
corporate power is unsuccessfully trying to impose on
ordinary people and our democracies."
Similarly, War on Want executive
director John Hilary
"Today marks the end of TTIP.
secrecy was the only way the European Commission could keep the
European people from learning the truth about these appalling
negotiations, and now the cat is out of the bag."
"We have long warned that TTIP is a
danger to democracy, food safety, jobs and public services,"
"Now we see it is even worse than we
feared. Today's leak shows the European Commission preparing to
sell us down the river, doing deals behind closed doors that
will change the face of European society for ever.
It is simply
unacceptable that a group of unelected officials should be
allowed to contemplate such a thing without any public
The 13th round of TTIP talks took place
last week in New York.
Barack Obama, who
stumping for the deal last month in Germany, had hoped to wrap
up negotiations by the time he left office - a timeline that looks
Public support on both sides of
the Atlantic has
Leading U.S. presidential
candidates oppose the deal and others like it
President François Hollande on
became just the latest French official to
express skepticism about the deal