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Iraqi Kurdistan's independence referendum

11-10-2017

On 25 September 2017, the government of the autonomous Region of Kurdistan in Iraq, under its president, Masoud Barzani, organised a referendum on independence, disregarding calls by the Iraqi central government and the international community to postpone it. The referendum was held in the Kurdistan Region's constituencies and also in the neighbouring 'disputed' territories, in particular the oil-rich area of Kirkuk, which have de facto if not legally been governed by the Kurdish authorities since ...

On 25 September 2017, the government of the autonomous Region of Kurdistan in Iraq, under its president, Masoud Barzani, organised a referendum on independence, disregarding calls by the Iraqi central government and the international community to postpone it. The referendum was held in the Kurdistan Region's constituencies and also in the neighbouring 'disputed' territories, in particular the oil-rich area of Kirkuk, which have de facto if not legally been governed by the Kurdish authorities since the moment they were recaptured from ISIL/Da'esh. Even though the 'yes' side has won, it is by no means certain that a Kurdish state will emerge in the near future. Such a state would be weakened by internal divisions and poor economic conditions. In addition, Syria, Turkey and Iran strongly condemned the referendum and have taken retaliatory action. Among other considerations, they are worried that an independent Kurdish state would encourage their own Kurdish populations to seek greater autonomy. However, the prospect of a Greater Kurdistan is remote, since the regional Kurdish landscape is dominated by the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) and its affiliate parties, which do not share the Iraqi Kurdish leaders' ideology or strategic alliances. Concerned by the fragmentation of the Middle East, the EU, the USA, Russia, and most of the region's powers other than Israel, disapproved of the referendum, which took place in the context of the ongoing fight against ISIL/Da'esh, and called for negotiations within the existing Iraqi borders. This briefing updates Regional implications of Iraqi Kurdistan's quest for independence, EPRS, December 2016.

China-Iceland Free Trade Agreement

12-09-2013

China signed a free trade agreement (FTA) with Iceland earlier this year. This is China's first FTA with a western European state. Once in force it will waive most tariffs in trade between the two countries. However, the tiny size of Iceland's market and the fact that the agreement does not provide low-tariff entry for China's products onto other European markets raises questions over China's motives. In particular, it is suggested that China is using this FTA to promote its strategic goals, such ...

China signed a free trade agreement (FTA) with Iceland earlier this year. This is China's first FTA with a western European state. Once in force it will waive most tariffs in trade between the two countries. However, the tiny size of Iceland's market and the fact that the agreement does not provide low-tariff entry for China's products onto other European markets raises questions over China's motives. In particular, it is suggested that China is using this FTA to promote its strategic goals, such as obtaining better access to shipping routes through the Arctic or to natural resources extracted in the region.

Mining in the EU: regulation and the way forward

19-12-2012

The EU mining industry may be part of the solution to Europe's raw material shortage, but limiting the environmental footprint of mining is a key requirement if it is to be revived.

The EU mining industry may be part of the solution to Europe's raw material shortage, but limiting the environmental footprint of mining is a key requirement if it is to be revived.

Shale gas in Europe: prospects and risks

16-11-2012

In Europe, the exploitation of shale gas is just starting, and only in some countries. Shale gas may reduce reliance on external gas supplies, but there are concerns about environmental impacts and reduced investment in renewable energies.

In Europe, the exploitation of shale gas is just starting, and only in some countries. Shale gas may reduce reliance on external gas supplies, but there are concerns about environmental impacts and reduced investment in renewable energies.

Impacts of Shale Gas Extraction on the Environment and on Human Health – 2012 Update

15-10-2012

This study discusses the possible impacts of hydraulic fracturing on the environment and on human health updating a study published in 2011. Detailed studies of environmental risks arising from unconventional gas extraction activities have been published recently on European and national levels substantially broadening and deepening the scientific basis. However, knowledge and availability of information are still limited. High risks are identified in a number of environmental aspects, notably when ...

This study discusses the possible impacts of hydraulic fracturing on the environment and on human health updating a study published in 2011. Detailed studies of environmental risks arising from unconventional gas extraction activities have been published recently on European and national levels substantially broadening and deepening the scientific basis. However, knowledge and availability of information are still limited. High risks are identified in a number of environmental aspects, notably when taking into account the cumulative risks of multiple installations typical for unconventional gas activities.

Externe Autor

Matthias ALTMANN, Werner Weindorf and Werner ZITTEL (Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH) , Stefan LECHTENBÖHMER (Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy)

Proceedings of the Workshop on "Shale Gas in the EU : Its Impact on the Environment and the Energy Policy, from the Perspective of Petitions Received"

15-10-2012

In the context of the work which the European Parliament has undertaken on this important and controversial subject Petitions Committee organised this workshop to provide a platform for petitioners and experts to compare, contrast and confront their views. Answering to the allegations, questions and demands of different petitioners (from France, Romania, Poland, Bulgaria, United Kingdom and Germany), the experts highlight the important implications of shale gas exploration on the environment and ...

In the context of the work which the European Parliament has undertaken on this important and controversial subject Petitions Committee organised this workshop to provide a platform for petitioners and experts to compare, contrast and confront their views. Answering to the allegations, questions and demands of different petitioners (from France, Romania, Poland, Bulgaria, United Kingdom and Germany), the experts highlight the important implications of shale gas exploration on the environment and the climate, and at the same time its potential significance in terms of the diversification of energy supply and security. In addition to the petitioners and the members' representatives of the shale gas industry, Member States and European Commission officials have been invited to take the floor.

Externe Autor

Florent Pelsy and Marta Ballesteros (Legal analysis of petitions on shale gas extraction) , Michael LaBelle (Analysis of the petitions from Bulgaria and Poland on shale gas extraction) , John Broderick and Kevin Anderson (Regulation of the Unconventional fossil fuels extraction - Climate Change Considerations) , Matthias Altmann and Werner Zittel (Analysis of the petition from Germany on shale gas extraction)

Arctic Governance : Balancing Challenges and Development

25-06-2012

The Arctic region is experiencing major changes, which are occurring more rapidly than in any other region of the world, mainly as a result of global warming and climate change. Coupled with new technology, changes in the Arctic have rendered resources that were once well beyond our reach accessible. Commercial ships, for example, are now using Arctic routes each summer to shorten the length of their trips between continents; such routes that would have been impassable only a few decades ago. The ...

The Arctic region is experiencing major changes, which are occurring more rapidly than in any other region of the world, mainly as a result of global warming and climate change. Coupled with new technology, changes in the Arctic have rendered resources that were once well beyond our reach accessible. Commercial ships, for example, are now using Arctic routes each summer to shorten the length of their trips between continents; such routes that would have been impassable only a few decades ago. The fragility of the Arctic environment and of its ecosystems has led to growing concern that they may reach a tipping point, after which they would simply collapse. The rising seas caused by melting Arctic glaciers are only one example of the relation. More robust Arctic governance systems need to be developed soon, particularly as the UNFCCC discussions are not progressing as expected. For The Arctic Council, for example, should be given wider powers. Arctic governance will have to strike a balance between protection and development, and between respecting Arctic States and their inhabitants and recognising the legitimate interests of the rest of the world. Several Arctic States have issued Arctic strategy papers, and the European Commission will this month adopt its second Communication on the EU’s Arctic policy.

Proceedings of the Workshop on "Impact of Shale Gas and Shale Oil Extraction on the Environment and on Human Health"

15-03-2012

Within the current debate on unconventional gas and oil resources in Europe, the European Parliament organised a workshop to discuss the impacts of shale gas and shale oil extraction on the environment and on human health, ways of mitigating them and the appropriateness of the current EU legislative framework in the context of the future developments in this field.

Within the current debate on unconventional gas and oil resources in Europe, the European Parliament organised a workshop to discuss the impacts of shale gas and shale oil extraction on the environment and on human health, ways of mitigating them and the appropriateness of the current EU legislative framework in the context of the future developments in this field.

Externe Autor

Didier Bonijoly (Bureau de Recherches Géologiques et Minières - BRGM), Robert B. Jackson (Duke University), Paulina Jaramillo (Carnegie Mellon University), Tomasz Maj (Talisman Energy Polska), John Broderick (Tyndall Centre, University of Manchester), Louis D'Amico (Pennsylvania Independent Oil and Gas Association), Carina Vopel (DG ENV, European Commission), Piotr Otawski (Polish Ministry of the Environment) and Mark Johnston (WWF)

Auswirkungen der Gewinnung von Schiefergas und Schieferöl auf die Umwelt und die menschliche Gesundheit

15-06-2011

In dieser Studie werden die möglichen Auswirkungen von Hydrofracking auf die Umwelt und die menschliche Gesundheit untersucht. Die quantitativen Daten und die Angaben zu den qualitativen Auswirkungen stammen aus den USA, da die Schiefergas-Gewinnung in Europa noch in den Kinderschuhen steckt. In den USA kann man hingegen auf eine über 40-jährige Erfahrung zurückblicken, und es wurden bereits über 50 000 Bohrungen durchgeführt. Zudem werden die Treibhausgasemissionen mittels einer kritischen Prüfung ...

In dieser Studie werden die möglichen Auswirkungen von Hydrofracking auf die Umwelt und die menschliche Gesundheit untersucht. Die quantitativen Daten und die Angaben zu den qualitativen Auswirkungen stammen aus den USA, da die Schiefergas-Gewinnung in Europa noch in den Kinderschuhen steckt. In den USA kann man hingegen auf eine über 40-jährige Erfahrung zurückblicken, und es wurden bereits über 50 000 Bohrungen durchgeführt. Zudem werden die Treibhausgasemissionen mittels einer kritischen Prüfung der bestehenden Literatur sowie anhand eigener Berechnungen bewertet. Die europäischen Rechtsvorschriften werden im Hinblick auf Hydrofracking überprüft, und es werden Empfehlungen zu weiteren Arbeiten formuliert. Die potenziellen Gasvorkommen und die künftige Verfügbarkeit von Schiefergas werden im Lichte der derzeitigen herkömmlichen Gasversorgung und ihrer voraussichtlichen Entwicklung erörtert.

Externe Autor

Stefan LECHTENBÖHMER (Wuppertal Institute for Climate, Environment and Energy), Matthias ALTMANN (Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH), Sofia CAPITO (Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH), Zsolt MATRA (Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH), Werner WEINDRORF (Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH) and Werner ZITTEL (Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH)

Shale gas

21-03-2011

Several EU Member States have potential shale gas reserves that could enhance energy security, create jobs and attract investment. But there are concerns about environmental effects.

Several EU Member States have potential shale gas reserves that could enhance energy security, create jobs and attract investment. But there are concerns about environmental effects.

Anstehende Veranstaltungen

10-12-2019
EU institutional dynamics: Ten years after the Lisbon Treaty
Andere Veranstaltung -
EPRS
11-12-2019
Take-aways from 2019 and outlook for 2020: What Think Tanks are Thinking
Andere Veranstaltung -
EPRS

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