Worldlog Week 24 – 2010

18 June 2010

Last week Esther Ouwehand and I were sworn in for the second time as members of parliament. A special and wonderful occasion. Time to continue our work in parliament for animals, nature and the environment. Meanwhile coalition negotiations are underway in the Netherlands. Fortunately, it appears as though a right-wing cabinet with the libertarian VVD, the Geert Wilders’ Freedom Party and the CDA is dead in the water. Other options for coalitions are now being studied. The Party for the Animals would favour a coalition involving the VVD, the Labour Party, D66 and GroenLinks.

Thanks for all the congratulations from abroad! We would like to share the congratulations from our Portuguese counterparts Partido Pelos Animais.

Dear Marianne and Esther,
Partido Pelos Animais would like to congratulate you both and the whole Partij voor de Dieren staff on your re-election, which consolidates your position in Dutch politics and reflects the growing importance of our common cause and the quality of the work you've been doing since 2006. We would also like to wish you good luck and hope that you keep up your excellent work despite any difficulties that may arise. You are a credit to the animal cause and we hope your success will soon be emulated by parties for animals across Europe and the world, so that together we can fight for a better and healthier world for all sentient beings.
Kind regards, Partido Pelos Animais' Coordinating Commission

My colleague Esther Ouwehand has been proclaimed the greenest politician of the year 2009-2010 by Natuurmonumenten, a nature reserve organization. Esther was awarded the prize for her drive and determination when debating, her deep knowledge of her portfolio and the number of motions and amendments regarding nature preservation that she submitted and had accepted.

And, although we would rather have a ban on mink farming in 2018, the Party for the Animals is also happy about the decision in the Lower House to close all mink farms in 2024. Last year, the Lower House had already agreed to a plan to give mink farmers the time until 2018 to wind down their businesses. Unfortunately, the Upper House wanted mink farmers to be given a longer winding-down period, after which the instigators of the proposal, the Socialist Party and the Labour Party, extended the transition period by six years.

Each year nearly five million minks are gassed in the Netherlands. The Netherlands is the world’s third largest producer of mink fur, after Denmark and China. The majority of the mink fur produced in the Netherlands is intended for export. Fortunately, there is now hope that this needless animal suffering will be stopped.

Until next week,