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Material use in the European Union: Towards a circular approach

11-09-2018

Global material use has tripled during the past four decades, in particular as a result of increasing living standards. The use of materials, which need to be extracted from our environment, can pose environmental challenges. It can also be threatened by resource scarcity and price volatility. This is particularly true for Europe, which is strongly dependent on imported materials. There are a number of ways to consider material use in the European Union (EU). The breakdown of material use by types ...

Global material use has tripled during the past four decades, in particular as a result of increasing living standards. The use of materials, which need to be extracted from our environment, can pose environmental challenges. It can also be threatened by resource scarcity and price volatility. This is particularly true for Europe, which is strongly dependent on imported materials. There are a number of ways to consider material use in the European Union (EU). The breakdown of material use by types of materials indicates that non-metallic minerals, which include sand and gravel, account for almost half of the materials used in the EU. Material flows provide an overall picture of how materials enter, are used and finally leave the economy. Some of these materials stay in stocks, which are growing year after year. However, the efficiency of material use, measured through resource productivity, has increased substantially since 2000, in part as a result of the economic crisis. Material use in the EU is steered by policies related to different areas such as energy, waste and industry. Relevant policy documents include the 2011 roadmap to a resource-efficient Europe, the 2013 seventh Environment Action Programme and the 2015 circular economy action plan. The EU supports these policies with funding. Funding channels include the Horizon 2020 framework programme for research and innovation, which allocated about €635 million between 2014 and 2020 for research on raw-material-related challenges. The European structural and investment funds also support developing more efficient material use practices. The European Parliament has advocated making the use of harmonised indicators for resource efficiency legally binding in the Member States and setting targets for increasing resource efficiency. Parliament has also supported broadening the scope of eco-design requirements to gradually include all relevant resource-efficiency features in product-design requirements.

EU law for an open independent and efficient European administration

27-07-2018

The results of the public consultation clearly suggest - EU citizens want action. Citizens call for an action that wold turn their EU right to good administration into solution. The workable and enforceable solution that adds value. Europe needs innovation! Innovation not only in tools and technologies but also in how EU governs itself.

The results of the public consultation clearly suggest - EU citizens want action. Citizens call for an action that wold turn their EU right to good administration into solution. The workable and enforceable solution that adds value. Europe needs innovation! Innovation not only in tools and technologies but also in how EU governs itself.

Impact Assessment of possible action at EU level for an open, efficient and independent EU administration

12-07-2018

The fragmentation of EU administrative law impinges on the EU’s ability to consistently uphold standards of good governance and administration, as well as to protect citizens’ rights when they interact with the administration. The impact assessment analyses what action could be taken to guarantee an open, efficient and independent EU administration. It compares the option of “doing nothing” with two alternative policy options. The study concludes that adopting a regulatory framework for administrative ...

The fragmentation of EU administrative law impinges on the EU’s ability to consistently uphold standards of good governance and administration, as well as to protect citizens’ rights when they interact with the administration. The impact assessment analyses what action could be taken to guarantee an open, efficient and independent EU administration. It compares the option of “doing nothing” with two alternative policy options. The study concludes that adopting a regulatory framework for administrative procedures would be the preferred option, since it would lead to clear advantages in terms of cost savings for the public, as well as the accessibility, transparency, legal certainty and predictability as well as the legitimacy of, and trust in, EU institutions. It would also compliment the transition of the EU administration towards e-government and e-administration tools.

Zunanji avtor

EPRS, DG

The fight against terrorism

25-05-2018

Significant benefits could be achieved by the EU and its Member States by addressing the gaps and barriers in the area of the fight against terrorism, notably by developing an evidence-based EU criminal policy cycle involving the European Parliament and national parliaments. In this context, EU institutions should conduct comprehensive ex-ante assessments and ex-post evaluations of counterterrorism measures, in line with better law-making principles. The effectiveness and fundamental rights compliance ...

Significant benefits could be achieved by the EU and its Member States by addressing the gaps and barriers in the area of the fight against terrorism, notably by developing an evidence-based EU criminal policy cycle involving the European Parliament and national parliaments. In this context, EU institutions should conduct comprehensive ex-ante assessments and ex-post evaluations of counterterrorism measures, in line with better law-making principles. The effectiveness and fundamental rights compliance of counter-radicalisation programmes should continue to be monitored. The framework for countering terrorism requires further refinement. A European law enforcement culture with full respect for fundamental rights needs to be fostered in which relevant information is shared and analysed, judicial cooperation tools are properly utilised and seeking the support of EU agencies becomes a natural reflex. This also requires the allocation of significant resources aimed at training and exchanges. Beyond resulting in more relevant, coherent, effective and efficient action in the fight against terrorism, such measures could increase the wellbeing of the population, reduce the material and immaterial impacts of terrorism, and ensure protection of fundamental rights when impacted by counterterrorism measures.

Zdravje in varnost pri delu

01-05-2018

Evropska unija od osemdesetih let 20. stoletja posebno pozornost namenja izboljšanju zdravja in varnosti pri delu. Z zakonodajo na evropski ravni so bili opredeljeni minimalni standardi za varstvo delavcev, države članice pa še vedno lahko ohranijo ali uvedejo strožje ukrepe. Z začetkom veljavnosti Lizbonske pogodbe je postala Listina EU o temeljnih pravicah pravno zavezujoča, s čimer sta zdravje in varnost postala še pomembnejši področji zakonodaje EU.

Evropska unija od osemdesetih let 20. stoletja posebno pozornost namenja izboljšanju zdravja in varnosti pri delu. Z zakonodajo na evropski ravni so bili opredeljeni minimalni standardi za varstvo delavcev, države članice pa še vedno lahko ohranijo ali uvedejo strožje ukrepe. Z začetkom veljavnosti Lizbonske pogodbe je postala Listina EU o temeljnih pravicah pravno zavezujoča, s čimer sta zdravje in varnost postala še pomembnejši področji zakonodaje EU.

Kultura

01-04-2018

Dejavnost Evropske unije na področju kulture dopolnjuje kulturno politiko držav članic na različnih področjih. K temu sodi na primer ohranjanje evropske kulturne dediščine, sodelovanje kulturnih ustanov različnih držav in spodbujanje mobilnosti ustvarjalcev na področju kulture. Na ta sektor vplivajo tudi določbe Pogodb, ki se ne nanašajo izrecno na kulturo.

Dejavnost Evropske unije na področju kulture dopolnjuje kulturno politiko držav članic na različnih področjih. K temu sodi na primer ohranjanje evropske kulturne dediščine, sodelovanje kulturnih ustanov različnih držav in spodbujanje mobilnosti ustvarjalcev na področju kulture. Na ta sektor vplivajo tudi določbe Pogodb, ki se ne nanašajo izrecno na kulturo.

Boj proti revščini, socialni izključenosti in diskriminaciji

01-04-2018

S podporo državam članicam v boju proti revščini, socialni izključenosti in diskriminaciji želi Evropska unija okrepiti vključevanje in povezanost evropske družbe ter vsem državljanom omogočiti enak dostop do možnosti in sredstev, ki so na voljo.

S podporo državam članicam v boju proti revščini, socialni izključenosti in diskriminaciji želi Evropska unija okrepiti vključevanje in povezanost evropske družbe ter vsem državljanom omogočiti enak dostop do možnosti in sredstev, ki so na voljo.

Organic farming legislation - Revision of EU Regulation on organic production and labelling of organic products

09-03-2018

Developing organic production is an EU policy objective. While the EU organic market is constantly expanding, only 6 % of total EU agricultural area is used for organic cultivation, and the difference between EU demand and production is covered by growing imports. To overcome the regulatory obstacles to the development of the sector and increase consumer confidence in the EU organic logo, the Commission adopted a proposal in March 2014 for a regulation on organic production and labelling of organic ...

Developing organic production is an EU policy objective. While the EU organic market is constantly expanding, only 6 % of total EU agricultural area is used for organic cultivation, and the difference between EU demand and production is covered by growing imports. To overcome the regulatory obstacles to the development of the sector and increase consumer confidence in the EU organic logo, the Commission adopted a proposal in March 2014 for a regulation on organic production and labelling of organic products, repealing the current framework dating from 2007. Following a series of trilogue meetings, the Maltese Presidency and the European Parliament reached a preliminary agreement on 28 June 2017. The Council's Special Committee on Agriculture endorsed the agreement, which the Parliament's Agriculture Committee subsequently approved on 22 November 2017. The full Parliament and Council now need to approve the text before the new regulation can enter into force. This briefing updates earlier editions, of September (PE 568.317), and October 2015 (PE 596.036), drafted by Francesco Tropea.

Enhancing EU actions on economic, social and cultural rights within its human rights policy

22-02-2018

Article 21 of the Treaty on the European Union (TEU) affirms that the EU’s external action should be guided by the principle of ‘the universality and indivisibility of human rights’. However, economic, social and cultural rights (ESC rights) have received less attention than their civil and political counterparts within this sphere of EU activity. This study analyses the progress made by the EU in implementing its commitment to respect, protect and fulfil ESC rights in its external action, making ...

Article 21 of the Treaty on the European Union (TEU) affirms that the EU’s external action should be guided by the principle of ‘the universality and indivisibility of human rights’. However, economic, social and cultural rights (ESC rights) have received less attention than their civil and political counterparts within this sphere of EU activity. This study analyses the progress made by the EU in implementing its commitment to respect, protect and fulfil ESC rights in its external action, making specific reference to three such rights – namely the right to just and favourable conditions of work, the right to an adequate standard of living and the right to education. This study also identifies structural obstacles that may be impeding the ability of the EU to promote these rights in an effective manner, and offers a set of concrete recommendations which aim to further enhance EU action in this regard.

Zunanji avtor

Annabel EGAN, Ireland; Laurent PECH, Colm O’CINNEIDE

Okoljska politika: splošna načela in osnovni okvir

01-02-2018

Evropska okoljska politika temelji na previdnostnem načelu in načelih preprečevanja, odpravljanja okoljske škode pri viru ter odgovornosti povzročitelja. Okvir za prihodnje ukrepe na področju okoljske politike postavljajo večletni okoljski akcijski programi. Ti so vpeti v horizontalne strategije in se upoštevajo v mednarodnih pogajanjih o okoljskih zadevah, bistvenega pomena pa je njihovo izvajanje.

Evropska okoljska politika temelji na previdnostnem načelu in načelih preprečevanja, odpravljanja okoljske škode pri viru ter odgovornosti povzročitelja. Okvir za prihodnje ukrepe na področju okoljske politike postavljajo večletni okoljski akcijski programi. Ti so vpeti v horizontalne strategije in se upoštevajo v mednarodnih pogajanjih o okoljskih zadevah, bistvenega pomena pa je njihovo izvajanje.

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