Arent these the same people who have NEVER had their accounts signed off?
The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor project is in hot water with the European Parliament for failing to manage EU funds properly. The Parliament’s Budgetary Control Committee MEPs this week advised against approving 2013 spending by ITER personnel due to delayed disbursements and growing budget costs. …
If I remember right it is the European Commission not the European Parliament who are ones with the reallly dodgy accounts. I've always thought that Peter Mandelson must have really felt at home in the commission..
That said I'm sure the quality of the European Parliament accounts and expenses claims are superb...
The European Court of Auditor, which is an independent body, signed off EC accounts every year between 2007 and 2013. They certified them as legal, regular and reliable as well as free of material error.
They did criticise an error rate of about 5% in the 2013 budget, but errors are NOT fraud, instead its where EU money is spent without applying the appropriate regulations. And almost all of the errors were caused by national governments, not the EU.
Then let's have an "independent"(1) committee to audit their accounts instead of people trying to score political points.
Or better yet make it scientists who at least understand that "shit happens" on these projects, but not MEP's who ultimately have an agenda.
(1) - It's very hard for this word to make sense anymore, somebody always seem to be on the take from somebody.
What a shame ITER has turned into a mess and been used as a political football. I know we've been saying fusion power is just 50 years away for 50 years but if you look at the findings of the last decade I think we are, at long last, probably quite close. We're at the stage where creating and confining a plasma is hard and in terms of energy output we are getting close to break even. There's certainly a way to go still but none of it looks like it would be a show stopper.
I've been following the ITER project for years and like a lot of big government projects it seems to have suffered from stagnation and too many leaders. It's never really felt like the goal was to build a fusion power plant it was always to understand this or that aspect of fusion power generation which is a much harder sell.
I have visited JET (not far from Oxford). A truly amazing technological achievement, worth of those original Dr Who episodes with the many monitored control room where the TARDIS lands...
Oh and for all those that think the 50 years away prediction was unwise, please remember that the physics was done years ago. It just took that long for the computers to catch up and model them!!!
I'll get my coat...
this , in 25 yrs time when the scientists finally go "Huzzah, it works", no one will want one built near them because it has the word 'nuclear' on the side of the can.
And green peace et al will be against it because they like shivering in the dark when the wind stop blowing at night.
As a post script, the US congress bitched like hell at the cost of Hubble and its servicing missions. anyone remember the names of the nay sayers?
If you made science 10% of GDP, 9% would be for things that were tangential to the subject studied.
It is a problem with politics. Companies can focus and ignore diversity. Govts can be diverse and choose to focus.
The problem is politicians want to choose winners so they can be popular.
Political groups like the Green Party want to choose losers.
I don't know the solution, just the current system is, well....
Voting should be limited to replacing the dastards in charge, not allowed to decide anything that matters Who cares if the checks are late or too big. Did not these fools know that both would happen, when the insisted on cost sharing and control sharing, rather than rational competition-to-the-death that historically works so well to produce progress? Idealists out to be strangled at birth, so should believers, regardless of belief.
ITER was set up in the first place not because it made sense, but because it could be sold, sort of, to the publics in the few places capable of getting this done. The Europeans, not one of those few, ought to sit down and shut the fook up.
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