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Single-use plastics and fishing gear: Reducing marine litter

17-06-2019

Most of the plastic in our oceans originates from land-based sources. On European beaches, plastics make up 80-85 % of marine litter, which is considered a major threat to marine and coastal biodiversity. Marine litter also costs the European Union economy an estimated €259 million to €695 million per year. In May 2018, the European Commission put forward a legislative proposal seeking to address the issue of marine litter from plastics. The proposal would introduce a series of measures regarding ...

Most of the plastic in our oceans originates from land-based sources. On European beaches, plastics make up 80-85 % of marine litter, which is considered a major threat to marine and coastal biodiversity. Marine litter also costs the European Union economy an estimated €259 million to €695 million per year. In May 2018, the European Commission put forward a legislative proposal seeking to address the issue of marine litter from plastics. The proposal would introduce a series of measures regarding the top 10 single-use plastics found on European beaches, as well as fishing gear, with a view to reducing their impact on the environment and ensuring a functional internal market. After completion of the legislative procedure, the final act was signed by the presidents of the co-legislators (European Parliament and Council) on 5 June 2019, and published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 12 June 2019. Member States have two years (i.e. until 3 July 2021) to transpose the new directive into national law. Fourth edition of a briefing originally drafted by Didier Bourguignon. document has been designed for on-line viewing.

Port reception facilities for ship waste: Collecting waste from ships in ports

07-06-2019

Marine litter and pollution put the marine environment at risk. While a great proportion of marine litter originates from land-based sources, limiting waste discharges from ships also plays an essential role in efforts to preserve marine and coastal ecosystems. Based on international law, EU legislation requires vessels to bring the waste they generate on voyages to waste-reception facilities in port, and obliges EU ports to provide such facilities to ships using the port. Despite these developments ...

Marine litter and pollution put the marine environment at risk. While a great proportion of marine litter originates from land-based sources, limiting waste discharges from ships also plays an essential role in efforts to preserve marine and coastal ecosystems. Based on international law, EU legislation requires vessels to bring the waste they generate on voyages to waste-reception facilities in port, and obliges EU ports to provide such facilities to ships using the port. Despite these developments, discharges at sea continue. In January 2018, the European Commission put forward a new legislative proposal seeking to improve the collection of ship waste while ensuring efficient maritime transport operations in ports. Interinstitutional negotiations concluded on 13 December 2018. The final text was adopted by the Parliament on 13 March 2019 and then by the Council on 29 March. The Directive was then signed on 17 April by the presidents of the two institutions and will be published in the Official Journal shortly.

Combined transport directive review: Getting more goods off EU roads

15-04-2019

The European Union's efforts to reduce the negative impacts of transport include promoting a shift from road freight transport to lower-emission transport modes. This also includes combined transport operations, which consist of at least one road leg for initial or final haulage and one non road leg, on rail or water. The 1992 Combined Transport Directive set out measures that were meant to increase the competitiveness of combined transport against road-only transport. In 2017, the Commission proposed ...

The European Union's efforts to reduce the negative impacts of transport include promoting a shift from road freight transport to lower-emission transport modes. This also includes combined transport operations, which consist of at least one road leg for initial or final haulage and one non road leg, on rail or water. The 1992 Combined Transport Directive set out measures that were meant to increase the competitiveness of combined transport against road-only transport. In 2017, the Commission proposed to simplify the existing rules and make combined transport more attractive by means of economic incentives. The European Parliament's Committee on Transport and Tourism adopted its report in July 2018, and the Transport Council meeting of 3 December 2018 agreed a general approach. However, as trilogue negotiations had not made progress on reaching a compromise, Parliament adopted a legislative resolution at first reading on 27 March 2019, in advance of the European elections. Negotiations could restart in the new parliamentary term. Fourth edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

CO2 emission standards for heavy-duty vehicles

09-04-2019

In May 2018, the Commission proposed a regulation setting the first-ever CO2 emission performance standards for new heavy-duty vehicles in the EU, as part of the third mobility package. It would require the average CO2 emissions from new trucks in 2025 to be 15 % lower than in 2019. For 2030, the proposal sets an indicative reduction target of at least 30 % compared to 2019. Special incentives are provided for zero- and low-emission vehicles. The proposed regulation applies to four categories of ...

In May 2018, the Commission proposed a regulation setting the first-ever CO2 emission performance standards for new heavy-duty vehicles in the EU, as part of the third mobility package. It would require the average CO2 emissions from new trucks in 2025 to be 15 % lower than in 2019. For 2030, the proposal sets an indicative reduction target of at least 30 % compared to 2019. Special incentives are provided for zero- and low-emission vehicles. The proposed regulation applies to four categories of large trucks, which together account for 65 %-70 % of CO2 emissions from heavy-duty vehicles. The Commission proposes to review the legislation in 2022 in order to set a binding target for 2030, and to extend its application to smaller trucks, buses, coaches and trailers. In the European Parliament, the proposal was referred to the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, which adopted its report on 18 October 2018. Parliament voted on the report on 14 November 2018. Trilogue negotiations were concluded on 18 February 2019 with an agreement that sets a legally binding 30 % reduction target for the average fleet emissions of new trucks by 2030. The Parliament is expected to vote on the agreed text during the April II plenary session. Third edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Study in focus: Sampling points for air quality

02-04-2019

Air quality monitoring at fixed sites is a major instrument provided for in the Ambient Air Quality Directive to check compliance with limit or target values, which have been set for the protection of human health. This study analyses the criteria for the location of monitoring sites in five Member States to identify ambiguous provisions that might lead to different assessments of air pollution exposure.

Air quality monitoring at fixed sites is a major instrument provided for in the Ambient Air Quality Directive to check compliance with limit or target values, which have been set for the protection of human health. This study analyses the criteria for the location of monitoring sites in five Member States to identify ambiguous provisions that might lead to different assessments of air pollution exposure.

Air Quality and urban traffic in the EU: best practices and possible solutions

05-10-2018

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the PETI Committee, aims at gaining deeper insights into air quality problems of cities and regions, which are often caused by traffic. Five cities and regions are analysed in more detail. General best practice examples and policy options are provided for transport, but also for domestic heating, construction work and integrated approaches.

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the PETI Committee, aims at gaining deeper insights into air quality problems of cities and regions, which are often caused by traffic. Five cities and regions are analysed in more detail. General best practice examples and policy options are provided for transport, but also for domestic heating, construction work and integrated approaches.

External author

Mr. Christian NAGL, Ms. Iris BUXBAUM, Mr. Siegmund BÖHMER, Mr. Nikolaus IBESICH, Mr. Hugo RIVERA MENDOZA, Umweltbundesamt (Austria)

Setting CO2 emission performance standards for new heavy-duty vehicles

13-09-2018

This initial appraisal assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission's impact assessment accompanying its proposal for a regulation setting CO2 emission performance standards for some categories of new 'rigid lorries' and 'tractors'. The proposal seeks to contribute to achieving the climate target set by the Paris Agreement, adopted on 12 December 2015, i.e. 'holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts ...

This initial appraisal assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission's impact assessment accompanying its proposal for a regulation setting CO2 emission performance standards for some categories of new 'rigid lorries' and 'tractors'. The proposal seeks to contribute to achieving the climate target set by the Paris Agreement, adopted on 12 December 2015, i.e. 'holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels'. In addition, it intends to help Member States achieving the national greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets in the road transport sector for the period 2021-2030 set by the 'effort sharing' regulation proposed by the Commission. The appraisal concludes that the impact assessment clearly defines the problems to be addressed, although in a couple of cases only one option is considered (in addition to the baseline). In such cases, the Commission's approach appears not to be entirely in line with the better regulation toolbox. The analysis carried out appears to be sound and well evidenced, providing ample and detailed insight into the issues considered. The analysis of impacts focuses on the economic and environmental dimension, consistently with the manner in which the problems have been defined. Their quantitative assessment is based on three models which, according to the IA, have already been 'successfully' used in previous impact assessment regarding transport, energy and climate policies, The IA appears to have addressed all of the Regulatory Scrutiny Board's recommendations, and the legislative proposal seems to be consistent with the analysis carried out in the IA.

Marine litter: single-use plastics and fishing gear

09-07-2018

The Commission proposal aims to reduce the environmental harm from single-use plastics and fishing gear. The supporting impact assessment (IA) does not discuss the impacts on innovation, research and development or the feasibility for businesses to invest into alternative materials. The IA only briefly touches upon the implications for SMEs and does not explain why the open public consultation ran for 8 weeks instead of the 12 weeks. Finally, the proposal misses certain measures foreseen under the ...

The Commission proposal aims to reduce the environmental harm from single-use plastics and fishing gear. The supporting impact assessment (IA) does not discuss the impacts on innovation, research and development or the feasibility for businesses to invest into alternative materials. The IA only briefly touches upon the implications for SMEs and does not explain why the open public consultation ran for 8 weeks instead of the 12 weeks. Finally, the proposal misses certain measures foreseen under the preferred option and contains measures not foreseen in the IA.

Port reception facilities for the delivery of waste from ships

22-03-2018

This note seeks to provide an initial analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission's impact assessment (IA) (consisting of part 1 and part 2), accompanying the above-mentioned proposal, submitted on 16 January 2018 and referred to Parliament's Committee on Transport and Tourism. Ship-generated waste, such as oily waste, sewage and garbage, poses a significant threat to the marine environment (IA part 1, p.3). The current legal framework laying down the rules applicable to ship-generated ...

This note seeks to provide an initial analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission's impact assessment (IA) (consisting of part 1 and part 2), accompanying the above-mentioned proposal, submitted on 16 January 2018 and referred to Parliament's Committee on Transport and Tourism. Ship-generated waste, such as oily waste, sewage and garbage, poses a significant threat to the marine environment (IA part 1, p.3). The current legal framework laying down the rules applicable to ship-generated waste is Directive 2000/59/EC (hereafter referred to as 'the directive'). The directive is based on the provisions of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (the MARPOL Convention), which was developed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO)) and regulates discharges at sea. The directive strengthens the regime established under MARPOL through a port-based approach, focusing on operations in ports, including 1) development of waste reception and handling plans in ports; 2) advance notification of waste by ships before entry into port; 3) mandatory delivery of ship-generated waste; 4) payment of fees by ships for the reception of their ship-generated waste; 5) exemptions for ships engaged in scheduled traffic; 6) inspections to verify compliance with the delivery requirements; and 7) development of an information and monitoring system.

Air transport: Single European Sky

01-02-2018

The single European sky initiative aims to increase the efficiency of air traffic management and air navigation services by reducing the fragmentation of European airspace. By its nature, this ongoing initiative is pan-European and open to neighbouring countries.

The single European sky initiative aims to increase the efficiency of air traffic management and air navigation services by reducing the fragmentation of European airspace. By its nature, this ongoing initiative is pan-European and open to neighbouring countries.

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