EU seeks global environmental pact

EPA-EFE/MARIO RUIZ

An artistic representation of a glacier composed of almost 9 tons of solid ice illustrates global warming during the Lollapalooza music festival in Santiago, Chile, March 15, 2018.

Commission seeks mandate from Member States to negotiate a global climate deal


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The European Commission on March 19 has asked the Council for a mandate to negotiate an international Global Pact for the Environment on behalf of the European Union.

According to the Commission, the request, in the form of a recommendation comes after French President Emmanuel Macron presented the initiative in September 2017 on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

“When it comes to the environment, we’re all in it together,” Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Commissioner Karmenu Vella said.

The Pact would consolidate in a single international text the fundamental principles of international environmental law, such as the right to an ecologically healthy environment or the duty to take care of the environment. The recommendation to the Council on March 19 aims at ensuring that all Member States of the European Union act together, making sure that European environmental policies and laws are respected.

“The upcoming UN negotiations on a Global Pact for the Environment present a fresh opportunity to consolidate key environmental principles in one international text,” Vella said. “Today’s action will allow European collective leadership in the process,” he added.

The European Union has some of the most advanced and comprehensive environmental policies in the world, and is committed to promoting sustainable development worldwide, the Commission said, noting that, as a strong global actor, it has been leading the way in numerous UN processes and negotiations, such as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate action.

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