EEL News service 2008/6, 20 March 2008

Added to Case Law, ECJ
C-81/07, Commission vs. Greece
ECJ 13-03-2008
The European Court of Justice ruled that Greece had failed to fulfil its obligations under Directive 2000/59/EC on port reception facilities for ship-generated waste and cargo residues. The authorities had omitted to develop and implement waste reception and waste handling plans. More concretely, Greece failed to duly approve the reception plans for the ports of Pirée, Heraklion, Volos, Kos and Rhodos, along with other non-specified ports. Recently, the ECJ found France to be in breach of the same Directive and condemned that country for similar reasons (case C-106/07).
Sector: Waste
Added to Sectors, General

* Brussels European Council 14-15 March: Presidency Conclusions
Between 13 and 14 March 2008 the Heads of state and government of the Member States gathered to Brussels for the Spring European Council meeting. The adopted European Council Presidency Conclusions dedicated a substantial part to climate change, following the ambitious commitments made by the previous Spring European Council on 9 March 2007.  Consecutively, the Spring 2008 European Council declared that with regards to the climate and energy package tabled by the European Commmission on 23 January 2008, a deal should be reached before the end of 2008 and the results should be fixed in law within the current legislative term, at the latest early in 2009. The Council Conclusions emphasised the need for coherent policies in other sectors with relation to energy and climate change. They also decided to give further consideration to the proposal to reduce value-added tax (VAT) on environmentally friendly products. The joint French-British initiative found backing in the conclusions, as the Commission was invited to “examine areas where economic instruments, including VAT rates, can have a role to play to increase the use of energy-efficient goods and energy-saving materials”. See also ECP Working Paper and CEPS Commentary

* Eurobarometer survey on public attitude towards the environment
On 13 March the Eurobarometer, the Public Opinion Analysis sector of the European Commission, published the results of its survey on the attitude of EU citizens towards the protection of the environment. According to the report, 67% of European citizens prefer to see decisions on the environment made jointly within the European Union rather than at national level. 82% of the respondents consider a harmonised European environmental legislation necessary; according to 80% the EU should assist to third countries to improve their environmental standards and 78% would accept increased EU funding for environmental protection, even at the expense of other areas.

Added to Sectors, Climate change
* Joint paper by the Commission and the Secretary-General/High Representative concerning ” Climate change and international security”
Javier Solana, High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy and Secretary-General of the Council of the European Union jointly with the European Commission submitted a paper on 11 March 2008 to the attention of the Spring European Council. The document entitled ” Climate change and international security” warns that climate change is already having a profound impact on international security as a result of an increasingly hostile competition between states for dwindling global resources in the face of water and food shortages, overfishing, reductions of arable land, floods and droughts. The paper puts forward a number of recommendations to overcome the challenge, such as enhancing the EU’s disaster response and conflict prevention capabilities as well as facilitating an increased cooperation with third countries while ensuring the leading role of the Union in promoting global climate security.

* EU leaders should not be afraid to already embrace the climate change and energy package – CESP Commentary 7 of 5 March 2008
The climate and energy package forms a strong package, the author Ms Louise van Schaik from Clingendael underlines. She explains that it is of utmost importance to reach agreement before the end of 2008, or early 2009 at the latest, given that in June 2009 European Parliament elections will take place and in the light of the the EU’s position in the negotiations on an international climate treaty. Following the Bali Summit, these have now officially started and are supposed to be finalised by the 2009 Copenhagen Summit. The EU leaders should therefore fully embrace the package at the European Council meeting of 14-15 March 2008.

Added to Sectors, Energy
* Gain without pain: towards a more rational use of energy – EPC Working Paper No.29
On 5 March 2008 the European Policy Centre (EPC) published a working paper with the intention to provide an input to the climate and energy negotiations of the Spring European Council. The study identifies obstacles to the rational use of energy and gives several recommendations to devise a policy that aims at fostering a more rational use of energy. The five key tools that would ensure a more efficient energy use include a pricing based on different factors than a purely market approach, the use incentives and standards to ensure the application of energy efficient technologies and mechanisms which can turn long-term efficiency gains into upfront benefits. Moreover, the study suggests to set the energy use of the public sector as an example and to provide more extensive information for the public in order to raise awareness.

Added to Sectors, Water
* Commission proposes amendments to Directive on criminal sanctions for ship-source pollution
On 11 March 2008 the European Commission tabled a proposal (COM(2008)134) to amend Directive 2005/35/EC on ship-source pollution and on the introduction of penalties for infringements. The Directive intended to criminalise certain polluting conducts, in conjunction with Council Framework Decision 2005/667/JHA: the Directive laid down the basic principles for penalties while the Framework Decision specified the applicable sanctions in details. This latter instrument however was annulled by the European Court of Justice on 23 October 2007 (Case C-440/05). The ECJ had reasoned in that case that the rules of the Framework Decision were adopted on the wrong legal basis of article IV of the EU Treaty provisions, i.e. the “Third Pillar” on police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters. They should have been adopted on the basis of Article 80(2) EC Treaty, thus in the First Pillar. The recent proposal intends to fill in the legal vacuum created with the annulment of the Framework Decision the following way: it incorporates a substantial part of the annulled decision into the Directive itself, which was adopted on the basis of Article 80(2) EC Treaty.

* Helsinki Commission concludes 29th meeting
The Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission, also known as the Helsinki Commission, the governing body of the “Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area” concluded its 29th annual meeting on 6 March 2008. Member of the Commission, states bordering the Baltic Sea together with the European Communities, agreed on the composition of the Implementation Group for the Baltic Sea Action Plan. Two new recommendations were adopted: Recommendation No. 29/1 sets targets for mercury and other substances stemming from emissions of crematoria, while Recommendation No. 29/2, sets rules on analysing marine litter for global comparison purposes.

National Pages

The following national pages have been updated: Israel, Poland and Portugal

Added to National pages, Israel
* Air Pollution from Traffic: Knesset Passes Amendment to Traffic Order
On February 18 2007 the Knesset (the Israeli Parliament) passed an amendment to the Traffic Order that will allow local authorities to take independent measures to tackle air pollution from traffic in their area. The amendment significantly expands the authority of municipalities and allows them to manage traffic in their jurisdiction in order to reduce pollution, as part of a multi-year plan for air pollution control.

Added to National pages, Poland

* EU ETS plans meet protest from new Member States
The Polish government expressed its disapproval of the Commission’s proposal on the review of the EU emission trading scheme (COM(2008)16) on 4 March 2008. The contested part of the proposal intends to auction all carbon allowances in the power sector from 2013. On 5 March 2008, the Czech Republic made similar remarks, warning that it would lead to a significant increase in Czech electricity prices, and calling for gradual transition instead.

Added to National Pages, Portugal

* Portugal imposes eco-tax on industrial water consumption
On 6 March 2008 the Portugal government adopted a law on environmental taxing of water consumption. The taxing scheme will not affect domestic consumption but will be imposed on major consumers in the agricultural and industrial sector. The new measures are hoped to result in a 50 million euros saving per year; by modifying water pricing rules, the government expects to change consumption habits as well.

News and events
Added to Events
* 1st Forum for the Future of Agriculture
Syngenta and the European Landowners Organisation (ELO) have come together to create a forum on the future of agriculture in which the main challenges facing the sector can be addressed and the necessary responses understood, discussed and agreed. The inaugural meeting of the forum will be focused on the need to agree the objectives for European agriculture in the 21st Century.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date: 27 March 2008

* FEDERE 2008 (in French)
Held under theme of “Climate change and CSR: what are the strategic options for companies?”, the FEDERE forum (European forum for sustainable development and corporate social responsibility), is a key meeting point for companies involved in sustainable development bringing together some 700 participants.
Location: Paris, France
Date: 27-28 March 2008

* Skills for Sustainability – Putting the Pieces Together
As a key annual sustainability event for UK Further and Higher Education, this conference will encourage and inspire to identify essential skills and knowledge and go on to equip them to embed skills for sustainability in their own staff and students.
Location: Exeter, UK
Date: 31 March – 2 April 2008
* ERTC Sustainable Refining Conference – Meeting the CO2 Challenge
On this conference, industry executives will present how they expect to respond to the call to more aggressively pursue development efforts on carbon reduction technologies like CCS, energy efficiency and alternative fuels (including biofuels), either on their own or in partnership with other industries.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date: 31 March – 2 April 2008

* Harmonisatie van milieuaansprakelijkheidsregels (Harmonisation of Rules on Environmental Liability, in Dutch)
At this event dr. K. de Smedt from the University of Maatsrict will give an in-sight to her thesis discussing the aspects of harmonising environmental liability rules, entitled ‘Environmental Liability in a Federal System. A Law and Economics Analysis’.
Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands
Date: 18 April 2008

* Wie beschermt het natuurbeschermingsrecht? (in Dutch)
The discussion will focus on the implementation issues of the Natura 2000 programme in The Netherlands and in Flanders.
Location: Tilburg, The Netherlands
Date: 29 May 2008
Added to Vacancies

* T.M.C. Asser Instituut – PhD Researcher EU Law in the area of freedom, security and justice
The T.M.C. Asser Instituut has a vacancy for a PhD Researcher in EU Law in the area of freedom, security and justice. Among others, the successful candidate is expected to carry out PhD research and contract research in the field of EU Law, to teach courses and lectures at post-academic level as well as to write, edit and manage (hard copy and electronic) publications.
Location: The Hague, The Netherlands
Deadline: 15 April 2008

* United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – Programme Officer, P-3
The successful candidate will co-ordinate reviews of national communications from Annex I
Parties and will participate in the policy analysis of national and international activities in the climate change area. He/she will provide inputs to various documents related to assessment of implementation of the Convention and the Kyoto Protocol by Annex I and non-Annex I countries as well as will provide substantive support at the meetings of the subsidiary bodies and the Conference of the Parties (COP) of the UKFCCC, and the COP serving as Meeting of the Parties (COP/MOP) to the Kyoto Protocol.
Location: Bonn, Germany
Deadline: 28 March 2008

* United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – Programme Officer, P-3
Under the direct supervision of the Programme Officer (P4) of the Small- Scale CDM Project Activities (SSC) in the Methodologies Unit and under the general guidance of the CDM Manager, the Programme Officer will provide support towards the implementation of the work programme as a technical officer on methodological issues relating to small-scale project activities under the CDM.
Location: Bonn, Germany
Deadline: 4 April 2008

* United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – Associate Programme Officer, P-2
In the framework of the Adaptation, Technology and Science programme, the successful candidate will provide support to the work of the Adaptation subprogramme. Support includes liaising with organisations active in the field of adaptation, preparing synthesis and technical reports; analysing information for use by other staff; providing support during meetings of the COP, the CMP and their subsidiary bodies and representing the secretariat in meetings of international bodies as required.
Location: Bonn, Germany
Deadline: 4 April 2008

* United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) – Associate Programme Officer, P-2
Under the direct supervision of the Programme Officer and the general guidance of the CDM
Manager, the Associate Programme Officer will review all aspects of requests for the issuance of certificates of emission reduction (CERs) and verification reports to ensure that reports and verification methodologies meet the required standards. He/she will also prepare summary notes for review by the CDM Executive Board for registration and issuance reports.
Location: Bonn, Germany
Deadline: 4 April 2008

* European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) – Senior Scientific Advisor, Grade AD 12 
ECHA is organising the current call for expressions of interest to constitute a reserve list for the post of Senior Scientific Advisor, to work in the Executive Office of the Agency. He/she will be responsible for providing Executive Director of ECHA with expert scientific and technical advice on matters relating to chemicals regulation.
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Deadline: 7 April 2008

* European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) – multiple positions
The EFSA has several openings, offering positions for both junior and senior scientific officers in various units: the organisation seeks a Junior Scientific Officer (Grade AD 5) to the Feed Additives (FEEDAP) Unit, a Junior Scientific Officer (Grade AD 5) to the Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to food Unit, a Senior Scientific Officer – (Grade AD 8) to the Plant Health (PLH) Unit, a Senior Scientific Officer (Grade AD 8) to the Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to food Unit, as well as a Senior Scientific Officer (Grade AD 9) to the Unit on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ unit).
Location: Parma, Italy
Deadline: 7 April 2008

Wybe Th. Douma (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Jens Hamer (Court of First Instance of the European Community, Luxemburg)*
* All views expressed are entirely personal and can in no way be attributed to the CFI or ECJ

Leonardo Massai (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Marianna Kondas (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)

Technical realisation:
Marco van der Harst (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)