713

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Freshwater protection: EU policy and the status of freshwater systems

15-02-2017

Freshwater ecosystems are particularly rich in biodiversity and fulfil important ecosystem services. However, the continuing presence of pollutants still raises concerns for public health, as well as for nature conservation. Surface water bodies and groundwater alike are threatened by synthetic and also naturally occurring substances that can have a negative impact on the aquatic environment and on human health. Increased temperature and over-abstraction of water are further causes for concern. Meanwhile ...

Freshwater ecosystems are particularly rich in biodiversity and fulfil important ecosystem services. However, the continuing presence of pollutants still raises concerns for public health, as well as for nature conservation. Surface water bodies and groundwater alike are threatened by synthetic and also naturally occurring substances that can have a negative impact on the aquatic environment and on human health. Increased temperature and over-abstraction of water are further causes for concern. Meanwhile, heavy modifications to the natural flow and physical changes to water bodies can also cause serious disturbances to water ecosystems. With the Water Framework Directive (WFD), the EU adopted comprehensive legislation for the protection of water within the EU. Under the directive, Member States are required to achieve good status in all bodies of surface water and groundwater by 2015, or 2027 at the latest. Unfortunately, despite considerable improvements in water quality, this goal was not achieved by the end of 2015 as hoped.

Governance of the energy union

14-02-2017

On 30 November 2016, the Commission proposed a regulation on governance of the energy union, as part of its 'Clean energy for all Europeans' package. The proposal is designed to integrate and simplify planning, reporting and monitoring obligations of the Commission and EU Member States, to make it easier to monitor overall progress and address weaknesses in implementing the goals of energy union, in particular the EU targets on renewables, energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions set out in ...

On 30 November 2016, the Commission proposed a regulation on governance of the energy union, as part of its 'Clean energy for all Europeans' package. The proposal is designed to integrate and simplify planning, reporting and monitoring obligations of the Commission and EU Member States, to make it easier to monitor overall progress and address weaknesses in implementing the goals of energy union, in particular the EU targets on renewables, energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions set out in the 2030 Climate and Energy Framework. National energy and climate plans are to be prepared for the 2021-2030 period, followed by progress reports. Both plans and reports will use binding templates, and gain early input from the Commission. The reform includes enhanced measures for public and regional consultation. It also proposes to set up national and EU registries and inventories on greenhouse gas emissions, as a means to assess progress in meeting the goals of the Paris Climate Change Agreement. The proposal also outlines some additional measures the Commission can take to ensure EU targets on renewables and efficiency are met. Please click here for the full publication in PDF format

What if animal farming were not so bad for the environment?

08-02-2017

What options exist, especially in terms of new technologies, for reducing the carbon footprint of the livestock industry, how effective might they be, and what could be done to encourage their implementation? The livestock industry is responsible for around 14.5 % of global greenhouse gas emissions. The magnitude of this percentage is due to the emission of large amounts of methane and nitrous oxide, which both result in greater global warming than carbon dioxide per gram of gas released. The main ...

What options exist, especially in terms of new technologies, for reducing the carbon footprint of the livestock industry, how effective might they be, and what could be done to encourage their implementation? The livestock industry is responsible for around 14.5 % of global greenhouse gas emissions. The magnitude of this percentage is due to the emission of large amounts of methane and nitrous oxide, which both result in greater global warming than carbon dioxide per gram of gas released. The main cause of livestock methane emissions is the digestive process in ruminants, such as cattle and sheep. In these animals, food is fermented, generating methane which is burped out. Nitrous oxide is generated through the application of fertilisers for animal feed production. This is also the case with crops grown for human consumption, but, as most of the energy stored in crops is lost when they are fed to animals, emissions due to fertilisers are much greater per calorie of animal produce than of plant produce. Both gases are produced by the storage of manure and its application as a fertiliser. In addition, carbon dioxide is emitted through burning fossil fuels for purposes such as fertiliser production, operation of farm machinery and transport of goods.

Towards a stronger EU emissions trading system

07-02-2017

In July 2015, the European Commission proposed a reform of the EU emissions trading system (ETS) for the 2021-2030 period. The proposed directive introduces tighter limits on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to achieve the EU's 2030 climate targets, while protecting energy-intensive industries from the risk of 'carbon leakage'. The Parliament is expected to vote on it during the February II session.

In July 2015, the European Commission proposed a reform of the EU emissions trading system (ETS) for the 2021-2030 period. The proposed directive introduces tighter limits on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to achieve the EU's 2030 climate targets, while protecting energy-intensive industries from the risk of 'carbon leakage'. The Parliament is expected to vote on it during the February II session.

European Commission follow-up to European Parliament requests

02-02-2017

In addition to its well-known role as a co-legislator, the European Parliament also supervises and scrutinises the work of the European Commission. The Parliament can therefore ask the Commission to take action to fulfil its role as guardian of the Treaties and to contribute to the improved functioning of the European Union and its legislation. Such requests usually take the form of resolutions. This Rolling Check-List covers the resolutions adopted by Parliament on the basis of own-initiative reports ...

In addition to its well-known role as a co-legislator, the European Parliament also supervises and scrutinises the work of the European Commission. The Parliament can therefore ask the Commission to take action to fulfil its role as guardian of the Treaties and to contribute to the improved functioning of the European Union and its legislation. Such requests usually take the form of resolutions. This Rolling Check-List covers the resolutions adopted by Parliament on the basis of own-initiative reports and legislative own-initiative reports during the current eighth legislative term up to December 2015, and the actions taken by the Commission as a result up to 31 October 2016. In total, the report covers 97 resolutions across almost all parliamentary committees. It provides a detailed overview of the Parliament's requests, and tracks the Commission's response and any further action taken. It thus offers a comprehensive scrutiny and reference tool, providing easy access to the follow-up given by the Commission to the Parliament's requests.

Post-2020 reform of the EU Emissions Trading System

01-02-2017

In July 2015, the European Commission proposed a reform of the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) for the period 2021-2030, following the guidance set by the October 2014 European Council. The proposed directive introduces a new limit on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the ETS sector to achieve the EU climate targets for 2030, new rules for addressing carbon leakage, and provisions for funding innovation and modernisation in the energy sector. It encourages Member States to compensate for indirect ...

In July 2015, the European Commission proposed a reform of the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) for the period 2021-2030, following the guidance set by the October 2014 European Council. The proposed directive introduces a new limit on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the ETS sector to achieve the EU climate targets for 2030, new rules for addressing carbon leakage, and provisions for funding innovation and modernisation in the energy sector. It encourages Member States to compensate for indirect carbon costs. In combination with the Market Stability Reserve agreed in May 2015, the proposed reform sets out the EU ETS rules for the period up to 2030, giving greater certainty to industry and to investors. In the European Parliament, the ENVI Committee takes the lead on the proposal, while it shares competence with the ITRE Committee on some aspects. The ITRE Committee adopted its opinion on 13 October 2016; the ENVI Committee adopted its report on 15 December 2016, and a vote in plenary is expected in February 2017. This briefing updates an earlier edition, of October 2016: PE 593.498.

Environmental Implementation Review

31-01-2017

Launched by the European Commission in 2016, the Environmental Implementation Review (EIR) is aimed at providing an overview of how well Member States are implementing EU environmental law and at helping them if they are struggling. The Commission says that insufficient and uneven implementation causes damage to the environment and human health, and entails high costs. The EIR is a response to calls from the European Parliament and others to improve the situation and better integrate environmental ...

Launched by the European Commission in 2016, the Environmental Implementation Review (EIR) is aimed at providing an overview of how well Member States are implementing EU environmental law and at helping them if they are struggling. The Commission says that insufficient and uneven implementation causes damage to the environment and human health, and entails high costs. The EIR is a response to calls from the European Parliament and others to improve the situation and better integrate environmental law into other policy areas.

How an EU Lifespan Guarantee Model Could Be Implemented Across the European Union

31-01-2017

This study was commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. It looks at the interrelation between the Consumer Sales and Guarantee Directive (CSD) and the Ecodesign Directive (EDD) with respect to guarantees and product expected lifetime. Through legal research and stakeholder surveys, it develops an EU lifespan guarantee model, which could be implemented by amendments to the proposal for an Online ...

This study was commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. It looks at the interrelation between the Consumer Sales and Guarantee Directive (CSD) and the Ecodesign Directive (EDD) with respect to guarantees and product expected lifetime. Through legal research and stakeholder surveys, it develops an EU lifespan guarantee model, which could be implemented by amendments to the proposal for an Online Sales Directive (OSD) and the EDD. It recommends extending the EDD to include the lifespan and extending the limitation period of the OSD. A commercial guarantee for the lifespan of a product is also suggested.

External author

Dr. Klaus TONNER; Prof. Rosalind MALCOLM

How an EU Lifespan Guarantee Model Could Be Implemented Across the European Union

30-01-2017

This study was commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. It looks at the interrelation between the Consumer Sales and Guarantee Directive (CSD) and the Ecodesign Directive (EDD) with respect to guarantees and product expected lifetime. Through legal research and stakeholder surveys, it develops an EU lifespan guarantee model, which could be implemented by amendments to the proposal for an Online ...

This study was commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. It looks at the interrelation between the Consumer Sales and Guarantee Directive (CSD) and the Ecodesign Directive (EDD) with respect to guarantees and product expected lifetime. Through legal research and stakeholder surveys, it develops an EU lifespan guarantee model, which could be implemented by amendments to the proposal for an Online Sales Directive (OSD) and the EDD. It recommends extending the EDD to include the lifespan and extending the limitation period of the OSD. A commercial guarantee for the lifespan of a product is also suggested.

External author

Klaus TONNER and Rosalind MALCOLM

Land use in the EU 2030 climate and energy framework

26-01-2017

On 20 July 2016, the European Commission proposed a regulation regarding the inclusion of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removals from land use and forestry in the EU 2030 climate and energy framework. This would be the first time that the land-use sector is formally included in EU climate policy. The proposed regulation would require Member States to balance emissions and removals from the land-use sector over two five-year periods between 2021 and 2030. It sets out accounting rules and allows ...

On 20 July 2016, the European Commission proposed a regulation regarding the inclusion of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and removals from land use and forestry in the EU 2030 climate and energy framework. This would be the first time that the land-use sector is formally included in EU climate policy. The proposed regulation would require Member States to balance emissions and removals from the land-use sector over two five-year periods between 2021 and 2030. It sets out accounting rules and allows for certain flexibilities. The proposed regulation is part of the EU's efforts to reduce its GHG emissions by 40% below 1990 levels by 2030. This target was set by the European Council in October 2014, and is also the EU's international commitment under the Paris Agreement on climate change. Second Edition. The ‘EU Legislation in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Upcoming events

27-02-2017
The state and development of the biomass of fish stocks managed by the CFP
Hearing -
PECH
28-02-2017
The Third Reform of the Common European Asylum System - Up for the Challenge
Other event -
LIBE
28-02-2017
Workshop on the consequences of Brexit
Workshop -
IMCO

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