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In May 2022, the European Parliament adopted a draft legislative act proposing to repeal the 1976 European Electoral Act and replace it with a new Council regulation on the election of the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) by direct universal suffrage. The aim is to harmonise a number of rules applicable to European elections, which are currently a combination between the common principles under the European Electoral Act and the different national rules implementing them. Harmonisation would ...

This study analyses the Commission proposal for a Regulation on European green bonds. It compares the proposal with existing EU legislation on sustainable finance and financial regulation and contextualises it in the EU green bond market. The assessment covers key regulatory aims, advantages of voluntary and mandatory options, different types of sustainable bonds, alignment with the Taxonomy Regulation, corporate and sovereign bonds, transparency requirements, review and supervision, enforcement ...

This study analyses the clarity and adaptability of EU environmental law and how these could be improved by means of regulatory options, by looking at four core EU environmental directives, in the field of water, air, nature and waste. Recommendations are made to improve the effectiveness of environmental law in European Union The research has been prepared at the request of the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs as asked by the Committee on ...

Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005 had a positive impact on animal welfare during transport after its entry into force; however, its implementation is not yet harmonised across the European Union (EU). To investigate its application across Member States and whether the European Commission is enforcing them properly, the European Parliament set up a Committee of Inquiry on the Protection of Animals during Transport (ANIT) in June 2020, which led to the drafting of a report and recommendations. A final ...

Under the arrangements set out in Council Directives 93/109/EC and 94/80/EC, EU nationals who live in a Member State other than their own are entitled to participate in European and municipal elections, respectively, in their country of residence. This concerns an estimated 11 million EU citizens of voting age (post-Brexit data). Even if Member States have successfully transposed both directives, voter turnout among mobile citizens remains low compared to nationals. Similarly, only a fraction of ...

The prohibition of discrimination and the protection of human rights are important elements of the EU legal order. Nevertheless, discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people persists throughout the EU and takes various forms, including verbal abuse and physical violence. Sexual orientation is now recognised in EU law as grounds of discrimination. However, the scope of the provisions dealing with this issue is limited and does not cover social protection, ...

This briefing forms part of an EPRS series offering syntheses of the pre-legislative state of play and consultation on key European Commission priorities during the current five-year term. It summarises the state of affairs in the relevant policy field, examines how existing policy is working on the ground, and, where possible, identifies best practice and ideas for the future on the part of governmental organisations at all levels of European system of multilevel governance. Based on EPRS analysis ...

Batteries Directive

Briefing 01-10-2020

The EU should create a competitive and sustainable battery manufacturing industry. The EU needs, therefore, a regulatory framework fit for purpose. However, this briefing shows that the design and implementation of the Batteries Directive, which is the main legal act regulating batteries and accumulators at EU level, suffer from deficiencies that makes it impossible for this piece of EU law to adequately respond to new policy challenges. Some of the most pertinent shortcomings of the directive relate ...

The EU can become a global standard-setter in the area of artificial intelligence (AI) ethics. Common EU legislative action on ethical aspects of AI could boost the internal market and establish an important strategic advantage. While numerous public and private actors around the globe have produced ethical guidelines in this field, there is currently no comprehensive legal framework. The EU can profit from the absence of a competing global governance model and gain full 'first mover' advantages. ...

There is little doubt that artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) will revolutionise public services. However, the power for positive change that AI provides simultaneously has a potential for negative impacts on society. AI ethics work to uncover the variety of ethical issues resulting from the design, development, and deployment of AI. The question at the centre of all current work in AI ethics is: 'How can we move from AI ethics to specific policy and legislation for governing ...