EU states would have to reduce the consumption of most common and polluting plastic bags by 80% by 2019, under draft rules backed by the Environment Committee on Monday. To this end, MEPs recommend using economic instruments such as taxes and levies, marketing restrictions or bans. Plastic carrier bag litter is a major environmental concern, known to affect water bodies and aquatic eco-systems in particular.
EU legislation on aviation emission allowances will cover only intra-EU flights until the start of 2017, but will apply to all flights to or from the EU thereafter, says an informal agreement reached by MEPs and the Council Presidency on Tuesday. The legislation would also require EU member states to report on how they spend revenue from auctioning emission allowances.
Plans to prevent the introduction or halt the spread of “invasive alien species” of plants, animals or insects that cause ecological and economic damage were agreed by MEPs and the Greek Presidency of the Council on Wednesday. The draft legislation, which would require EU member states to coordinate their efforts, provides for a ban on species declared to be of “Union concern”.
Organisers of the “Right2Water” campaign urged the EU Commission to guarantee access to water and sanitation as a human right, and give a legal undertaking that water services will not be liberalised in the EU, in the first European Parliament debate on a European Citizens’ Initiative in Parliament on Monday. MEPs shared the view that access to water is a basic human right, but some pointed out that rules on providing drinkable water remain the remit of EU member states.
A proposed update of EU law to make environmental impact assessments clearer, build in biodiversity and climate change, and involve the public, was backed by the Environment Committee on Wednesday. This update, already informally agreed with the Council of Ministers, includes beefed up rules to ensure that decisions to authorize development projects are not influenced by conflicts of interest.
Parliament is to hold a public hearing next Monday on the universal right to clean water, the first EP hearing under the European Citizens' Initiative allowing the public to ask the EU authorities for new legislation.
a) luft-, jord- og vandforurening, affaldshåndtering og genvinding, farlige stoffer og præparater, støjniveauer, klimaforandring og beskyttelse af den biologiske mangfoldighed
b) bæredygtig udvikling
c) internationale og regionale foranstaltninger og aftaler med henblik på miljøbeskyttelse
d) afhjælpning af miljøskader
f) Det Europæiske Miljøagentur
g) Det Europæiske Kemikalieagentur
a) programmer og specifikke aktioner inden for folkesundhed
b) lægemidler og kosmetiske produkter
c) sundhedsaspekterne af bioterrorisme
d) Det Europæiske Agentur for Lægemiddelvurdering og Det Europæiske Center for Forebyggelse af og Kontrol med Sygdomme
a) fødevarers mærkning og sikkerhed
b) veterinærlovgivning om beskyttelse mod sundhedsrisici for mennesker; sundhedskontrol af fødevarer og fødevareproduktionssystemer
c) Den Europæiske Fødevaresikkerhedsautoritet og Det Europæiske Fødevare- og Veterinærkontor.