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Sustainable aviation fuels

23-11-2020

As part of the European Green Deal adopted in December 2019, which highlights the importance of boosting development of alternative fuels, the European Commission envisages a proposal in early 2021 to support the increased production and use of sustainable aviation fuels, so as to meet Paris Agreement climate change goals. A number of policy measures are already in place to increase sustainable aviation fuel use, but production and use of these fuels in Europe remains low. Eight different pathways ...

As part of the European Green Deal adopted in December 2019, which highlights the importance of boosting development of alternative fuels, the European Commission envisages a proposal in early 2021 to support the increased production and use of sustainable aviation fuels, so as to meet Paris Agreement climate change goals. A number of policy measures are already in place to increase sustainable aviation fuel use, but production and use of these fuels in Europe remains low. Eight different pathways for producing sustainable aviation fuels that can be used without changes to aircraft or refuelling infrastructure have been authorised, but a number of technical, feedstock-related and commercial barriers exist. Development of electro-fuels, which also represent a 'drop-in' type of fuel with potential to help efforts towards carbon neutrality in aviation, is considered technically viable but would require policy action for commercial development. The Commission is conducting a public consultation and is studying a number of policy measures, including a mandatory minimum share of sustainable aviation fuels to be supplied to airlines and/or to be used by airlines and a financial and technical support mechanism to promote the production and use of these fuels.

Research for the AGRI Committee - The Green Deal and the CAP: policy implications to adapt farming practices and to preserve the EU’s natural resources

23-11-2020

This document is the final report of the study developed by INRAE and AgroParisTech for the European Parliament: “The Green Deal and the CAP: policy implications to adapt farming practices and to preserve the EU’s natural resources’’ (IP/B/AGRI/IC/2020-036).

This document is the final report of the study developed by INRAE and AgroParisTech for the European Parliament: “The Green Deal and the CAP: policy implications to adapt farming practices and to preserve the EU’s natural resources’’ (IP/B/AGRI/IC/2020-036).

Ārējais autors

Hervé GUYOMARD; Jean-Christophe BUREAU; Vincent CHATELLIER; Cécile DETANG-DESSENDRE; Pierre DUPRAZ; Florence JACQUET; Xavier REBOUD; Vincent REQUILLART; Louis-Georges SOLER; Margot TYSEBAERT

What if AI could help us become 'greener'?

20-11-2020

While some argue that AI can potentially be useful or even indispensable in ‘green transitions’, important questions remain open. Should AI be only used in resolving different specific problems (for example, intelligent pollinating robots replacing a declining bee population) or should AI be employed in ‘governing’ the sustainability of complex socio-economic systems such as mobility, food, and energy? While the latter option is currently technically unattainable and may be ethically dubious, it ...

While some argue that AI can potentially be useful or even indispensable in ‘green transitions’, important questions remain open. Should AI be only used in resolving different specific problems (for example, intelligent pollinating robots replacing a declining bee population) or should AI be employed in ‘governing’ the sustainability of complex socio-economic systems such as mobility, food, and energy? While the latter option is currently technically unattainable and may be ethically dubious, it marks the axis of a political debate about possible synergies between sustainability and AI.

Forest fires: Environmental stakes

19-11-2020

Covering nearly one third of the land surface of the globe, forests make a wide range of direct and indirect contributions to human well-being. Home to most of the world's terrestrial biodiversity, they also play an essential role in climate change mitigation, removing about a quarter of the CO2 that human activities add to the atmosphere. Worldwide, millions of hectares (ha) of forests and other types of vegetation burn every year. Fire dynamics are shaped by a complex set of factors, including ...

Covering nearly one third of the land surface of the globe, forests make a wide range of direct and indirect contributions to human well-being. Home to most of the world's terrestrial biodiversity, they also play an essential role in climate change mitigation, removing about a quarter of the CO2 that human activities add to the atmosphere. Worldwide, millions of hectares (ha) of forests and other types of vegetation burn every year. Fire dynamics are shaped by a complex set of factors, including human activity and climate. While a warming and drying climate increases the risk of fires, fires, by releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, contribute in turn to global warming. Forest fires that are not balanced by vegetation regrowth, i.e. fires used in the deforestation process, and fires burning on carbon-rich peatlands are of particular concern. Fires also emit air pollutants, including particulate matter, with adverse impacts on human health. Beyond emissions of particles and gases, forest fires can also affect biodiversity and ecosystem conditions, and damage soils. The European Union (EU) has committed to protecting the world's forests under several international agreements and initiatives, including the United Nations (UN) Convention on Biological Diversity and the Paris Agreement on climate change. At EU level, funding is available to support forest fire prevention and restorative measures, as well as research into fire risk management. The Union civil protection mechanism can be called upon for help by any country in the world when national response capacities to fight fires are overwhelmed. Under the European Green Deal, legislative and non-legislative measures are expected in the near future to strengthen forest protection within and outside the EU. The European Parliament recently asked the European Commission to propose an EU legal framework to tackle EU-driven global deforestation, based on mandatory due diligence for companies placing forest- and ecosystem-risk commodities and derived products on the EU market, with penalties in the event of non-compliance.

Global mega-trends: Scanning the post-coronavirus horizon

13-11-2020

The European Strategy and Policy Analysis System (ESPAS) – the strategic foresight network of the European Union institutions – offers a valuable ‘free space’ in which to conduct a genuine continental, and potentially global, conversation about where the world is heading over the medium to long run. It was initiated by the European Parliament almost a decade ago in order to help promote a serious discussion of this kind. The third ESPAS Global Trends Report, Global Trends to 2030: Challenges and ...

The European Strategy and Policy Analysis System (ESPAS) – the strategic foresight network of the European Union institutions – offers a valuable ‘free space’ in which to conduct a genuine continental, and potentially global, conversation about where the world is heading over the medium to long run. It was initiated by the European Parliament almost a decade ago in order to help promote a serious discussion of this kind. The third ESPAS Global Trends Report, Global Trends to 2030: Challenges and Choices for Europe, as published in April 2019. Transposing into the European context the kind of strategic foresight analysis undertaken in the United States by the National Intelligence Council (NIC) on global trends since the end of the 1990s, it aims to sketch the global and longer-term backdrop against which Europeans will seek to shape their future. The coronavirus pandemic broke out less than a year later.

Opportunities of post Covid-19 European recovery funds in transitioning towards circular and climate neutral economy

12-11-2020

The briefing presents specific green economic recovery measures that stabilise livelihoods, creates jobs and reduce biophysical impact. These measures are more effective, when accompanied by full carbon pricing, prioritizing investment in green infrastructure and innovation, phasing out of subsidies and tax exemptions for emissions-intensive activities, and promoting green finance. Although COVID-19 has reduced GHG emissions in 2020, the overall impact will be driven by investment choices. In the ...

The briefing presents specific green economic recovery measures that stabilise livelihoods, creates jobs and reduce biophysical impact. These measures are more effective, when accompanied by full carbon pricing, prioritizing investment in green infrastructure and innovation, phasing out of subsidies and tax exemptions for emissions-intensive activities, and promoting green finance. Although COVID-19 has reduced GHG emissions in 2020, the overall impact will be driven by investment choices. In the current economic climate, public investment is a key driver of the transition to a more sustainable economy.

Ārējais autors

Sigrid STAGL

Impacts of climate change and air pollution on the health of the EU population

12-11-2020

As 13% of deaths in the EU 28 Member States (EU-28) were attributable to the environment in 2012,1 it is clear that the effects of climate change are having tangible consequences for the European population. Its pace and intensity could thus lead to increasing health risks accross the EU. Globally, temperatures have already risen by 1°C above pre-industrial levels and a temperature increase of more than 2°C would lead to even greater health risks, especially for vulnerable populations such as the ...

As 13% of deaths in the EU 28 Member States (EU-28) were attributable to the environment in 2012,1 it is clear that the effects of climate change are having tangible consequences for the European population. Its pace and intensity could thus lead to increasing health risks accross the EU. Globally, temperatures have already risen by 1°C above pre-industrial levels and a temperature increase of more than 2°C would lead to even greater health risks, especially for vulnerable populations such as the elderly and children. There is therefore an urgent need for integrated strategies for adaptation and mitigation. Adaptation is aimed at reducing the climate change’s negative effects as well as at taking advantage of any opportunities that it creates, whereas mitigation strategies’ objective is to tackle the cause of climate change while minimising its possible impacts and potentially offering health (co)benefits.

Ārējais autors

Hélène ROSSINOT

Farm to Fork strategy - An overview of Parliament’s positions

12-11-2020

The aim of this briefing is to give an overview of positions the European Parliament has taken over the last twenty years that are relevant to the Farm to Fork strategy, the component of the European Green Deal that aims for a fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly food system. Despite it being a new strategy, most of its 27 actions are connected to already existing legislation and as such, Parliament has previously given its opinion on the subjects covered by the strategy. This briefing presents ...

The aim of this briefing is to give an overview of positions the European Parliament has taken over the last twenty years that are relevant to the Farm to Fork strategy, the component of the European Green Deal that aims for a fair, healthy and environmentally-friendly food system. Despite it being a new strategy, most of its 27 actions are connected to already existing legislation and as such, Parliament has previously given its opinion on the subjects covered by the strategy. This briefing presents a short summary of Parliament’s most relevant positions in the past.

RESEARCH FOR PECH COMMITTEE: Impact of the use of offshore wind and other marine renewables on European fisheries

12-11-2020

The study provides an overview of general impacts of the development of offshore wind farms and other marine renewables on the European fishing sector. It further highlights pathways for possible co-existence solutions of both sectors, a description of best practice examples and lessons learnt, the identification of research gaps and last but not least the presentation of policy recommendations.

The study provides an overview of general impacts of the development of offshore wind farms and other marine renewables on the European fishing sector. It further highlights pathways for possible co-existence solutions of both sectors, a description of best practice examples and lessons learnt, the identification of research gaps and last but not least the presentation of policy recommendations.

Ārējais autors

Vanessa STELZENMÜLLER, Antje GIMPEL, Jonas LETSCHERT, Casper KRAAN, Ralf DÖRING

Palm oil: Economic and environmental impacts

10-11-2020

Economical and versatile, palm oil has become the world's most widely used vegetable oil. Although palm oil can be produced sustainably, rising consumption increases the risk of tropical rainforests being cut down to make way for plantations. Deforestation threatens biodiversity and causes greenhouse gas emissions. In view of this, the EU has revised its biofuels policy to phase out palm oil-based biodiesel by 2030.

Economical and versatile, palm oil has become the world's most widely used vegetable oil. Although palm oil can be produced sustainably, rising consumption increases the risk of tropical rainforests being cut down to make way for plantations. Deforestation threatens biodiversity and causes greenhouse gas emissions. In view of this, the EU has revised its biofuels policy to phase out palm oil-based biodiesel by 2030.

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