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Health and environment

 

Parliament rejects national GMO bans proposal

Plenary Session Environment / Public health / Food safety28-10-2015 - 14:27
Animal feed  

A draft EU law that would enable any EU member state to restrict or prohibit the sale and use of EU-approved GMO food or feed on its territory was rejected by the European Parliament on Wednesday. Members are concerned that the law might prove unworkable or that it could lead to the reintroduction of border checks between pro- and anti-GMO countries. They call on the Commission to table a new proposal. (Read more: Parliament rejects national GMO bans proposal )

 

Novel foods: simpler approval rules to boost food innovation

Plenary Session Food safety28-10-2015 - 09:30
infographical illustration  

Ever heard of chia seeds, flavonoids, glycyrrhiza glabra or rapeseed protein? They are all classified as novel foods. On Wednesday 28 October MEPs approved plans to make it easier to get them approved by 359 to 202 votes with 127 abstentions. The proposal still has to be approved by the Council of Ministers before it can enter into force. (Read more: Novel foods: simpler approval rules to boost food innovation )

 

Eight things you should know about GMOs

Plenary Session Food safety27-10-2015 - 17:36
infographic illustration  

The use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) remains controversial, which is why the EU has very strict rules and complex authorisation procedures concerning their cultivation and commercialisation. Since April 2015, EU countries are able to ban the cultivation of GMOs on their territory, but should they have the same power regarding their commercialisation? MEPs voted against national bans on 28 October. Check out our infographic to find out more about GMOs in the EU. (Read more: Eight things you should know about GMOs )

 

MEPs ask EU Commission to monitor investigations into car emission test fraud

Plenary Session Industry / Transport / Environment27-10-2015 - 15:23
Car's exhaust pipe  

Emissions testing fraud should be investigated thoroughly and those responsible should face appropriate sanctions, say MEPs in a resolution voted on Tuesday. They say that the EU emissions testing system should be strengthened to ensure that EU emission limits are respected and that vehicles exceeding these limits are discovered quickly. They also recommend considering whether to establish an EU-level surveillance authority. (Read more: MEPs ask EU Commission to monitor investigations into car emission test fraud )

 

COP21: Parliament's roadmap for Paris UN climate talks

Plenary Session Environment14-10-2015 - 20:03
Female polar bear  

The EU and its member states must call for a 40% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and scale up climate finance commitments at the COP21 UN climate talks in Paris, Parliament said on Wednesday. MEPs also say a share of revenues from the EU's carbon market allowances should be earmarked for climate finance, and the aviation and shipping sectors should initiate measures to curb their emissions by the end of 2016. (Read more: COP21: Parliament's roadmap for Paris UN climate talks )

 

Environment MEPs oppose national GMO import bans proposal

ENVI Food safety13-10-2015 - 10:33
GMO's tomatoes? ©AP images/European Union - EP  

A draft EU law that would enable any member state to restrict or prohibit the sale and use of EU-approved GMO food or feed on its territory was opposed by Environment Committee MEPs on Tuesday. Members are concerned that the proposal might prove unworkable and lead to the reintroduction of border controls between pro and anti-GMO countries. The recommendation will be put to a vote by Parliament as a whole at the 26-29 October plenary session in Strasbourg. (Read more: Environment MEPs oppose national GMO import bans proposal )

 

COP21: the road leading to the vital climate change conference in Paris

Plenary Session Environment12-10-2015 - 17:24
infographic illustration  

Only two months left before world leaders gather in Paris to hammer out a global agreement to fight climate change. Parliament will send a delegation of 15 MEPs to the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) in December to help obtain a successful result. MEPs debate and vote on Parliament's position on Wednesday. Follow it live on our website and find out more about the stakes involved in our infographics. (Read more: COP21: the road leading to the vital climate change conference in Paris )

 

Capping emissions from medium-sized combustion plants

Plenary Session Public health07-10-2015 - 13:12
Air pollution illustatio photo ©AP Images/ European Union-EP  

Proposed EU sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emission limits for medium-sized combustion plants, such as electricity generators or heating systems for domestic, residential or industrial use, were backed by MEPs on Wednesday. They had already been informally agreed with EU ministers. In areas where these emissions breach EU air quality standards, EU countries would be required to assess whether to introduce stricter limits. (Read more: Capping emissions from medium-sized combustion plants )

 

MEPs debated car emissions tests fraud with the Commission

Plenary Session Industry / Transport / Consumers / Environment06-10-2015 - 16:52
Volkswagen exhaust emissions scandal  

MEPs debated the unfolding Volkswagen exhaust emissions scandal on Tuesday, on the basis of a parliamentary question. They asked Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska to clarify whether emission test manipulation took place in Europe. Many speakers said the ongoing scandal endangers the credibility of the whole car sector, and called on the Commission to speed up the introduction of real drive emissions testing. (Read more: MEPs debated car emissions tests fraud with the Commission )

 

La Via on the car emissions scandal: "We want a real assessment of emissions"

Others Transport / Consumers / Environment25-09-2015 - 11:58
Archive photo of Giovanni La Via  

Volkswagen, the German car manufacturer, has acknowledged that many millions of its cars sold worldwide have been specially equipped to trick emission tests, so as to appear less polluting. In the European Parliament, the Environment committee deals with emissions legislation. Committee chair, Italian EPP MEP Giovanni La Via, told us in an interview that the affair needs to be thoroughly investigated, rules on emissions toughened and proper oversight ensured at the EU level. (Read more: La Via on the car emissions scandal: "We want a real assessment of emissions" )