Environment

A-G Kokott opines – complaint on EU ETS is unfounded

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The Advocate-General at the Court of Justice of the European Union Juliane Kokott presented on 6 October her verdict on the complaint of three American airlines against the EU legislation which includes aviation...

Energy line to promote job creation and efficient energy for Europe

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France and Spain have just completed a historic milestone for energy. The first trans-Europe energy converting line has just begun construction, meaning that this is the first time in Europe that an electricity link...

Commission promotes cleaner transport fossil fuels

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 The European Commission is to promote cleaner sources of fossil fuels for transport. Article 7a of the Fuel Quality Directive, adopted in 2009, set a binding target to cut CO2 emissions from transport fuel production...

Controls ordered for sites with dangerous substances

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The Fourth of October marks the one-year anniversary of Hungary's 'red mud' disaster, where an industrial accident released caustic alumina waste into areas surrounding the plant. In memory of the accident and its victims,...

EU ETS: On-the-ground battle that’s affecting skies

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 The European Union held firm on the issue of extending the emission trading system (ETS) for all flights entering or departing from airports in the region, a move strongly opposed by 26 countries. Governments of...

EU shows support for carbon pricing on shipping, aviation

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European Union finance ministers have indicated support for the carbon pricing of international maritime and aviation transport. The ministers, meeting in Luxembourg, adopted conclusions on climate finance ahead of the UN climate change conference in...

MEPs: e-waste needs to be reduced

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EU member states should be obliged to collect and recycle more discarded fridges, phones and other e-waste, said the European Parliament's environment committee. MEPs want to make it easier for consumers to return small products,...

Ashton welcomes Myitsone Dam halt

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The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton welcomed the decision of the Myanmar (Burma) authorities to stop developments on the Myitsone Dam project. "We are encouraged by the news that...

EU-Brazil Summit to forge strategic global action

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The 5th EU-Brazil Summit will take place in Brussels on 4 October, covering global, regional and bilateral issues. Of these, climate change and the Rio+20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development will take the prominent...

EU needs full green economy by 2050

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Europe should be preparing itself now for the transition to a green economy by 2050, The European Commissioner for the Environment, Janez Potočnik, has said.   In a speech on 3 October, Potočnik said the Rio+20...

Environmentalists: Germany holding back EU on cutting car CO2 emissions

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  Germany is holding back attempts by the European Union to cut car emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) as part of its efforts to limit climate change, a report by environmental lobby group Transport &...

Commission dissects Greece and Hungary

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The European Commission has formally requested Greece and Hungary to notify national measures implementing directive 2009/143/EC as regards the delegation of the tasks of laboratory testing on organisms harmful to plants. This request is a...

Commission takes out the trash with Romania and Belgium

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The European Commission will take measures against Romania and Belgium, for failing to respect the 2010 deadline for the transposition of the EU framework directive on waste into their respective national law. The two EU...

Dutch warned about paper recycling

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The European Commision has warned the Dutch to respect  EU rules on public procurement when awarding contracts for processing and transporting of used paper.  The European Commission aimed to ensure that used paper processing and...

Czech Republic and Germany put on notice for EU ecodesign legislation

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The European Commission has formally requested the Czech Republic and Germany to bring their national legislation on ecodesign in line with EU rules. Both countries have yet to inform the Commission – after a...

FTT to finance biodiversity protection?

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The European Parliament has urged the UN’s Rio de Janeiro summit on sustainable development (“Rio+20”) to set "accountable targets" for global goals on renewable energy and energy efficiency. Parliament’s set of recommendations for the Rio+20...

Emissions trading: Climate-change ‘Clash of the Titans’?

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Capitol Hill saw strange political 'habitués' as the Obama administration, House Republicans, the aviation industry and labour groups all joined in opposition to the cap-and-trade system. At the heart of the issue was the...

JRC model links natural resources and conflict

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The EU Joint Research Centre (JRC) has developed a modelling tool to analyse the risk of conflicts occuring in developing countries. The tool combines online news reports with geographical satellite data to link the...

Commission focuses on ‘F-gases’

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On 26 September, the European Commission launched a public consultation on strengthening the EU measures to reduce emissions of fluorinated gases, a group of industrial gases seriously contributing the climate change. A Commission review...

German opposition demands more influence for EU citizens

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On 25 September, Germany's opposition Social Democrats (SPD) and Greens demanded more influence for EU citizens in European affairs and even a direct vote for top posts in Brussels. The centre-left SPD and Greens, the...

EU emissions-trading system ‘takes flight’

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The European Commission has taken an significant step for the aviation industry to aid in the fight against climate change; it will become part of the EU's emissions trading system (EU ETS) from 2012....

Poland: Raising EU climate targets ‘unrealistic’

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There is no chance of the European Union raising its carbon-dioxide (CO2) emission reduction targets in the run up to a global climate change summit at the end of the year, Poland's EU Affairs...

Green road map: ‘Fundamental economic changes needed’

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    On 20 September, the European Commission set out a road map in order to convert the EU’s economy to sustainability by 2050, which intends to identify sectors that consume the most resources and suggests...

MEPs go deep-sea fishing for EU-Moroccan agreement

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MEPs from different political groups have signed a petition asking the EU Court of Justice to rule on whether the EU fishing agreement with Morocco - in the territory of Western Sahara - respects...

Commissioner stresses need for ‘greener Europe’

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 Environment Resources Commissioner Janez Potočnik delivered a warning speech in Davos on 19 September about the problems facing Europeans concerning renewable resources. “The critical problem we face in Europe today is that after centuries of...

Hedegaard attends 66th UN General Assembly

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 On the occasion of the 66th annual meeting of the UN General Assembly, Climate Action  Commissioner Connie Hedegaard is visiting New York from 18-22 September to participate in a series of high-level meetings on...

UN General Assembly launches in New York with EU High-Representatives

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   The 66th UN General Assembly starts next week, on 21 September, with the first General Debate occurring since the adoption of the historic resolution 65/276 in May, under which the EU statement will be...

MEPs request stricter rules on greenhouse-gas emissions

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   The European Parliament approved a resolution on 14 September, stating: “The EU should speed up efforts to reduce emissions of fluorinated gases.” Instead of the traditional focus on carbon dioxide, MEPs believe that the EU's...

Eurovignette: An eco-friendly freight system

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 On 12 September the Council of the EU approved the European Parliament's amendments to introduce road use charges for heavy goods vehicles – 'Eurovignette'. Member states will have two years to introduce the measure into...

Maritime industry puts Hedegaard in bunker

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 Here we go again! You may remember that, just before our summer break, I reminded Climate Change Commissioner Connie Hedegaard that if the Commission had treated the shipping industry like the airline industry in...

Exhibitions launched to build green European cities

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The 'Train of Ideas' exhibition rolled into Brussels on 7 September and 'Brussels, A Sustainable City' was also launched in the Belgian capital. The 'green' train was created in April in Hamburg, European Green Capital...

Barroso warns of climate-change impact on Pacific Islands

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 European Commission President José Manuel Barroso and Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard took part in the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) in New Zealand on 7 September. President Barroso underlined the long-lasting ties between Europe and...

Hedegaard: ‘Others must follow EU on Kyoto’

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Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard has said in an interview with an Australian daily that the EU is interested to extend its commitments to the Kyoto Protocol only if others would follow. The next...

China halts production at ConocoPhillips offshore field

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On 2 September, China's maritime authority ordered all production operations be stopped on the leaky Penglai 19-3 oilfield in the Yellow Sea that is being developed by ConocoPhillips China, Xinhua reported. The State Oceanic...