Added to Case Law, ECJ
C-373/07 P, Mebrom v. Commission
On 2 April 2009, the ECJ rejected an appeal brought against the judgment of the CFI by which the Court dismissed as unfounded an action for annulment of Commission Decision refusing to allocate to the appellant quotas for the import of methyl bromide into the European in accordance with Articles 6 and 7 of Regulation (EC) No 2037/2000 on substances that deplete the ozone layer.
T-125/07, Scientific and Technological Committee of AGH and others v. Commission
The applicants sought a declaration that members of the Commission unlawfully failed to take appropriate measures, following the complaints made by the applicants, to eliminate the harmful effects on human health and the environment of techniques of capture and underground storage of carbon dioxide partly financed by the EU. The applicants claimed that such inactivity infringes the legal order of the EU and conflicts with the obligations of a member of the Commission. The Court of First Instance dismissed the action as inadmissible on the ground that the applicants were not entitled to bring an action for failure to act under Article 232 EC Treaty, as they were not individually affected by the alleged omission. Furthermore, the Court noted that the applicants failed to indicate in their application any particular measure that should have been taken by the Commission (currently available only in Polish).
Sector: Climate Change
C-401/08, Commission v. Austria
Austria has been condemned by the European Court of Justice for the failure to draw up external emergency plans for installations regulated under Council Directive 96/82/EC of 9 December 1996 on the control of major-accident hazards involving dangerous substances, as amended by Directive 2003/105/EC (currently available only in German and French).
C-184/08, Commission v. Luxenbourg
On 24 March 2009, the European Court of Justice condemned Luxembourg for failing to adopt or communicate within the prescribed time-limit dissuasive, effective and proportionate sanctions for infringements of Regulation (EC) No 648/2004 on detergents (currently available only in French).
Added to Legal texts, Climate Change
*Council adopts climate change and energy legislative package
On 6th April 2009, the EU justice and home affairs ministers approved the climate and energy package. The legislative package is designed to achieve the EU’s overall environmental target of a 20% reduction in greenhouse gases and a 20% share of renewable energy in the EU’s total energy consumption by 2020. The package contains six climate and energy laws: a Directive ting a common EU framework for the promotion of energy and renewable sources a revised Emissions Trading System for greenhouses gases a Decision to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across a wide range of activities including transport, agriculture and housing (the so called “effort-sharing decision”) a Regulation ting the first legally-binding standards for CO2 emissions from new passenger cars, to apply as of 2012 a revised Directive that will improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions through environmental standards for fuel and a Directive ting up a regulatory framework for the geological storage of carbon dioxide.
Added to Sectors, General
*G20 leaders fail to take up financial commitment to green investment
In their meeting in London on 2 April 2009, leaders of the G20 nations reiterated their commitment to tackling climate change and reaching an agreement on a post-Kyoto treaty in December. While G20 leaders promised a “green recovery” through investment in new technologies and low-carbon energy, they failed to undertake any binding financial commitments and to put sustainability at the centre of a $1tr (€74bn) deal to rescue the world economy.
*EU-US climate opinions converge in Prague
After a bilateral meeting in Prague, opinions in Europe and the United States on how to battle climate change are converging. In a joint communiqué, the EU and US recognised that they “will be in a be in a stronger position to get on board key international actors and emerging countries and achieve an ambitious outcome at the UN negotiations in Copenhagen later this year”. The EU and the US also agreed to work together on helping developing countries reaching their own goals in terms of reducing emissions.
Added to Sectors, Climate Change
*Conclusion of Bonn climate talks
The first round of UN climate talks ended last week without making any tangible progress toward the drafting of a new climate pact to replace the Kyoto protocol. In the 11-day talks, countries were divided over the scale of emissions cuts, financial aids and technology transfer to poorer countries. So far, the European is pledging to cut emissions 20% below 1990 levels by 2020 (30% if other industrialized nations follow suit), while the Obama administration is aiming to bring US emissions back down to 1990 levels by 2020, a reduction of about 17% from the current rate. A block of developing countries are demanding that the US, European countries, Japan and other wealthier countries slash emissions at least 40 % from 1990 levels by year 2020. Parties were invited to submit their input to the draft negotiating text, which would be prepared for the next round of talks in Bonn in June. Meanwhile, the negotiators in Bonn agreed to hold two extra rounds of negotiations this year on top of those already scheduled for June and October. An informal gathering will take place in Bonn on 10-14 August 2009, and a formal meeting will be held on 2-6 November 2009.
*European Commission approves UK state aid for feasibility studies on CCS projects
European Commission competition authorities has signed off on a request by the UK to issue government subsidies for two so-called “front-end engineering and feasibility studies” (FEED studies) on two large carbon capture and storage (CCS) demonstration projects. Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: “Carbon Capture and Storage is an important element in the EU’s climate change policy and needs to be demonstrated at industrial scale. The planned FEED studies will be an important step forward towards the construction of such a plant in the UK without unduly distorting competition.”
The following national pages have been updated: Germanyand The Netherlands
Notably, the following information was introduced:
Added to National Pages, Germany
*Germany adopts draft CCS law
Germany has recently introduced a draft law to promote the development of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. The legislation, which is expected to be passed before the summer break, s out a regulatory framework for pilot and demonstration plants. It also allows power plant operators to pass liability for the safe running of the CO2storage unit to the state 30 years after the coal-burning unit supplying the CO2 has been closed.
Added to National Pages, The Netherlands
*Commission s derogation to the Netherlands to comply with PM10 and NO2 standards
At the beginning of April 2009, the Commission ed the Netherlands a postponement of its obligation to meet the PM10 and NO2 standards within the prescribed time-limit, pursuant to Article 22 of Directive 2008/50/EC on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe. The Commission found that the Netherlands has shown that its National Air Quality Cooperation Programme contains a comprehensive package of measures to cut air quality excesses in the short term. Therefore, it decided to give the Netherlands more time to satisfy the European air quality standards, for PM10 until mid-2011 and for NO2 until 1 January 2015.
Added to Upcoming Events
*Conference “Biodiversity Protection-Beyond 2010”
2010 will be the year of the full evaluation of the delivery to the EU Biodiversity Action Plan and as well the UN International Year for Biodiversity. This major Biodiversity conference, organized by the European Commission, is aiming to convene all the main actors engaged in the development and implementation of EU biodiversity policy together with international institutions and globally recognized experts, in order to start framing the post-2010 biodiversity strategy. The participation to the conference is based on invitation only. However, the European Commission will on-line web-stream parts of the Conference that are likely to be of major interest.
Location: Athens, Greece
Date: 27-28 April 2009
*Conference “Research & Sustainable Development”
This 3-day conference, organized by the European Commission in cooperation with the Czech Presidency of the European , is seeking to gather scientists, industry, civil society and policy-makers to confront their views and stakes regarding the multiple ways through which European research contributes to global sustainable development.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date: 26-28 May 2009
*Annual Conference on European Water Management Law
The Academy of European Law and the Institute for German and European Water Management Law of the University of Trier are organizing for the second consecutive year an international conference on the challenges of modern European water management law. The conference will focus on cross-border cooperation in river basin districts, the relationship between water law and nature conservation, climate change aspects as well economic issues relate to the defition of water pricing policies, tax incentives and public procurement legislation.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date: 23-24 April 2009
Added to Vacancies
*United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Programme Officer (Biodiversity and Ecosystems), L-4
Under the overall supervision of the Director, DELC and the direct supervision of the Regional Director, Regional Office for Europe (ROE), the Programme Officer will support UNEP’s programme of work for ecosystems and biodiversity, integrate UNEP’s Ecosystem Management programme across national and regional priorities and action plans, enhance cross-sectoral cooperation for integrated management across ecosystem types and promote integration of ecosystem services into national planning processes, among others.
Location: Geneva, Switzerland
Deadline: 16 May 2009
*TRAFFIC, Programme Officer, Europe Programme
TRAFFIC, the wildlife trade monitoring network, is seeking a Programme Officer for its regional TRAFFIC Europe Programme. TRAFFIC actively monitors and investigates wildlife trade and provides information to diverse audiences worldwide as a basis for effective conservation policies and programmes. The Programme Officer will play a pivotal role in developing and implementing TRAFFIC Europe’s regional work programme. The position will report to the TRAFFIC Europe Regional Director.
Location: Cambridge, UK
Deadline: 5 May 2009
*European Science Foundation, Head of Unit – Life, Earth and Environmental Sciences
The European Science Foundation (ESF) is seeking to recruit a Head of Unit – Life Earth and Environmental Sciences, who will be in charge of developing and implementing the ESF Strategic Plan in his/her domain. This position involves: developing and implementing strategies to catalyse and support researchers and ESF Member Organisations, overseeing and contributing to the development of policy and its implementation within the overall ESF, liaising on behalf of the LESC Standing Committee with ESF Member Organisations and external scientific bodiesStrategy, among others.
Location: Strasbourg, France
Deadline: 4 May 2009
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)
Efstathia Koutsopoulou (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Marco van der Harst (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)