Added to Case Law, ECJ
C-417/08, Commission v. United Kingdom
On 18 June 2009, the ECJ condemned the United Kingdom for failure to adopt within the prescribed period the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with Directive 2004/35/EC on environmental liability with regard to the prevention and remedying of environmental damage.
C-422/08, Commission v. Austria
On 18 June 2009, Austria has been condemned by the ECJ for failure to transpose into national law within the prescribed time limit Directive 2004/35/EC on environmental liability with regard to the prevention and remedying of environmental damage.
Added to Sectors, Climate Change
*UN climate talks make limited progress
During the latest round of UN climate talks which took place in Bonn on 1-12 June 2009, Parties agreed to expand an initial draft negotiating text of about 30 pages to over 200 pages which will form the basis for a new global deal to be discussed up to Copenhagen in December 2009. At the end of the June meeting, UN’s top climate change official Yvo de Boer warned that negotiations were still far away from the GHG emission reduction range that has been out by science to avoid the worst ravages of climate change: a minus 25% to minus 40% reduction below 1990 levels by 2020. Developed countries and developing states such as China, India and Brazil so far have failed to agree on a possible outcome including new binding emissions targets. July’s summit of G8 leaders in Italy is now seen as the next opportunity for industrialised nations’ progress on such discussions.
*European Council postpones decision on climate change financing
EU leaders meeting in Brussels on 18-19 June 2009, put off decisions on financing climate change mitigation and adaptation, particularly in developing countries until the next meeting in October 2009. In the summit conclusions heads of state and government only reiterated what was already agreed by finance ministers, namely that sharing the financial effort to support climate measures in developing countries should be based on the principles of the ability to pay and the responsibility for emissions. The EU leaders supported the Swedish EU Presidency’s proposal to draw up a work programme to ensure proper EU coordination and decision-making ahead of international negotiating meetings leading to the Copenhagen summit and instructed the European Commission to draw up proposals on climate financing for the next EU leaders meeting in October.
Added to Sectors, Energy
*Commission launches web portal for energy efficiency in buildings
The European Commission has launched the Build Up Portalas a tool for sharing information on energy in buildings. The web portal offers access to a wide range of information on best practices, technologies and legislation for the improvement of energy efficiency by users. Building professionals, public authorities, home owners and tenants will have tailored access to the new portal allowing the sharing of information across Europe. The energy performance of buildings in Europe is currently determined by the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), adopted in 2002. The Commission proposed a re of the EPBD in November 2008. The estimated impact on energy efficiency of the re would be additional energy savings of the equivalent of 60 to 80 million tonnes of oil per year by 2020 – equivalent to a further reduction by 5 to 6% of EU energy consumption.
*Baltic Sea States signed agreement on the Baltic Energy Market Interconnection Plan
On 17 June 2009, the European Commission and eight Baltic Sea States signed a Memorandum of Understanding approving the Baltic Energy Market Interconnection Plan. The interconnection plan covers a number of electricity infrastructure projects to link Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia with the Nordic countries and Eastern Europe. According to the agreement, the Baltic countries aim to create a level playing field in the electricity market, open up to free international trade, and establish free competition and pricing policies. The Baltic Energy Market Interconnection Plan will remove inter-state energy grid restrictions such as regulated tariffs and will bring Baltic states into the Nordic energy market framework by 2013.
Added to Sectors, Chemicals
*Commission proposes new EU biocide rules
On 12 June 2009, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a Regulation concerning the placing on the market and use of biocidal products. The proposed Regulation will repeal and replace the current Directive 98/8/EC concerning the placing of biocidal products on the market. The proposal phases out the most hazardous substances, particularly those that may cause cancer, and introduces new rules for articles such as furniture and textiles treated with biocides, which are not covered by existing legislation. To promote the use of low-risk biocides and newly discovered substances, the Commission is proposing their authorisation at EU level. The proposed regulation is scheduled to enter into force on 1 January 2013.
*EU introduces six new electro-ban exemptions
On 10 June 2009, the European Commission adopted a Decision amending Directive 2002/95/EC on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment by the inclusion of six new exemptions. The new exemptions cover applications of lead, cadmium and mercury in electrical and electronic equipment. The decision states that certain materials and components containing lead and cadmium should be exempted from the prohibition, since the elimination of these hazardous substances in those specific materials and components is still technically or scientifically impracticable.
*European Chemicals Agency publishes shortened versions of REACH guidelines
The European Chemicals Agency is producing a series of shortened versions of the REACH Guidance Documents on processes and methods, to be used by industry and authorities. The first Guidance in a nutshell on requirements for substances in articles specifies which substances are covered under the REACH chemical rules. The second Guidance in a nutshell on registration data and dossier handling explains in simple terms the main elements of the collection of information for registration dossiers and dossier evaluation. Forthcoming guidance will cover areas such as data sharing, monomers and polymers, research and development, classification and labelling and chemical safety assessments.
The following national pages have been updated: United Kingdom
Notably, the following information was introduced:
Added to National Pages, UK
*UK adopts five point plan for climate action
The British government has published a detailed map predicting the effects of climate change in the country over the next 100 years and summarizing its climate change strategy. The predictions mainly focus on future increases in temperatures, water scarcity and increased incidents of flooding. The plan states that 103 providers of important public services will be required to report on their assessment of climate risks and their plans to respond to these. Over the summer the British government will out a wide range of initiatives and policies to take forward these plans, including a plan to meet the UK’s carbon budgets and cut emissions by more than a third by 2020.
Added to Upcoming Events
*European Policy Summit, Climate change: Keys to a concerted policy shift
This event is part of the official programme of the European Commission’s Green Week. The Summit will address the media’s role in informing citizens about the climate change debate in order to ensure much-needed societal support, the role of business in implementing green policies despite the economic recession, as well as the actions that developing countries need to consider and act upon in the months leading to Copenhagen.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date: 23-24 June 2009
*10th International Conference on Energy for a Clean Environment
The conference will deal with interconnected themes covering the reduction of local and global environment degrading emissions and aims to a better integration of supply and demand. It will address the topics of combustion or gasification of biomass, CO2 capture and sequestration technologies and engine efficiency and pollutant emissions in transports, among others.
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Date: 7-10 July 2009
*MARE Conference 2009: People and the Sea: ‘Living with uncertainty and adapting to change’
The central theme for this event brings together a range of related debates on coastal change and adaptation. The themes investigated in this conference include transformations in fisheries and aquaculture, socio-technical changes in coastal and deltaic landscapes, and cultural responses to changing coastal environments, among others.
Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Date: 9-11 July 2009
*Conference on Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Legislation
The central theme of this conference will be the implementation and enforcement of European environmental policy and legislation in practice. There will be special sessions and workshops devoted to issues such as raising awareness about the importance of good implementation, networking, the implementation of a risk based approach to inspections, the control of waste shipments, linking water quality objectives and industrial pollution, the IPPC Re proposal, performance indicators for environmental inspections and better regulation.
Location: Sibiu, Romania
Date: 23- 25 September 2009
Added to Vacancies
*University of Cambridge – EU Corporate Leaders Group on Climate Change – Senior Facilitator
The EU CLG was established in 2007 to bring together business leaders who believe that there is an urgent need to develop new and longer term policies for tackling climate change. The Senior Facilitator will be responsible for translating the EU CLG’s strategy into a detailed work plan and expediting its implementation. This will involve identifying opportunities and key events where strategic interventions by the EU CLG would drive the EU climate policy debate forward.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Deadline: 2 July 2009
*Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development – Senior Environmental Policy Analyst
The Environment, Health and Safety Division of the Environment Directorate is looking for a Senior Environmental Policy Analyst to manage its programme related to pesticide regulatory affairs. Under the supervision of the Head of the division the ed candidate will be primarily responsible for managing the Division’s work on pesticides and activities which support the harmonisation of information technology systems used by governments for the registration of pesticides.
Location: Paris, France
Deadline: 18 July 2009
*International for Conservation of Nature – Junior Professional Associate/Intern
The Climate Change Coordinator is seeking an intern to help implement a rapidly-growing workload. Tasks will include, amongst others: following IUCN’s climate change policy work support in event organization communications tasks and website maintenance on IUCN’s climate work support in producing climate change policy publications supporting IUCN’s programmatic work on adaptation logistical support logistical assistance and support during the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties in Copenhagen.
Location: Gland, Switzerland
Deadline: 3 July 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)