Added to Case Law, ECJ
General Court 26-03-2010
In its order, the President of the General Court has rejected the attempt of the chemical companies SNF and PPG to exclude acrylamide, which is used in the process of food packaging, from the EU list of substances of very high concern (SVHC) regulated under REACH. In December 2009, the Member State Committee had reached unanimous agreement on the identification of acrylamide and 14 other substances as substances of verv high concern. The two companies launched a legal challenge against the inclusion arguing that the chemical substance at issue is only used as an intermediate and can therefore not be subject to the REACH regulation. The President of the General Court dismissed the legal remedy and confirmed the chemical has been added to the SVHC list.
Added to Sectors, General
In the weekend of April 10 and 11 2010, world governments came together in Bonn to discuss climate change for the first time since December. The meeting was concluded with an agreement to intensify the negotiation schedule before the meeting in Mexico next year. The meeting however also showed the divided views of the governments, especially on the extent to which the Copenhagen accord should guide the future international negotiations. While the US favours the Copenhagen accord as the basis for further climate negotiations, other countries such as India and China argue that the accord has not been agreed upon by all countries and the EU is pursuing separate discussions to advance negotiations in specific areas. It is now up to the new chair of the UNFCCC Margaret Mukahanana-Sangarwe from Zimbabwe, to present proposals on how to integrate the accord in the future climate negotiations.
Nine individuals have been arrested in relation to the investigation of a 50 million carousel VAT fraud involving carbon emission trading. The fraud involves an estimated excess of 15 million CO2 allowances generated in Spain in 2009 that were allegedly put on sale in different countries after the liable companies to pay the VAT had disappeared. The EU has been prompted for action addressing the issue.
Added to Sectors, Climate change
The EU, the US, the Japanese government and the IT industry have established a common metric for the assessment of energy efficiency in data centres. Based on the agreement, signatories with firms involved in the manufacturing and running of servers and data centres are obliged to adopt measures that provide a minimum level of energy savings. The agreement promises to be an important step for the boosting of the energy efficiency of the data centre by breaking the increase of the energy use in the sector.
According to the legislative proposal published by the European Commission on April 6th 2010, Member States will be allowed to opt out of a single EU platform for the auctioning of carbon allowances under the EU emissions trading scheme (ETS) from 2013. The proposal is considered to be disappointing by several stakeholders, including WWF and the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) but optimistic to four large Member States e.g. the UK, Germany, Poland and Spain. Despites the results of the impact assessment on the regulation which showed that a single platform would be the most efficient and transparent way to auction allowances, Member States will now be allowed to set their own platform. Since the European Parliament is entitled to a three-month period to review the proposals of the Member States, the deadline of June for a final EU adoption which was set in the 2009 is already out of reach. This means a prolonged period of uncertainty for businesses and a prolonged exposure to carbon.
Added to Sectors, Chemicals
Based on over 7000 sampled from 19 Member States, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has found that various EU maximum toxic limits have been exceeded in 8% of food and feed products sampled in Europe. This concern dioxins and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), mainly formed by burning and finding their way to the food chain through contact with soil or water. The highest level of dioxin was found in fish liver and fish oil. Dioxins do not cause immediate health problems; however long term exposure to high levels can cause cancer. Consequently, the EFSA report has warned that its finding should be treated with caution.
Added to Sectors, Water
Following the agriculture ministerial meeting in Brussels at the end of March, a joint position for the water strategy of the Mediterranean has been reached. The strategy is due to be adopted in April and will involve 43 countries. According to the strategy, many regions in the Mediterranean are subject to significant water resource deficits and rainfall level droppings. Therefore, there is an urgent need to improve the water management. The strategy establishes a water policy framework relevant for the region but also taking EU policy principles into account. It also provides for short, mid and long term objectives and targets such as immediate revision of tariff systems or the future objective to stimulate the private sector investments.
Added to Upcoming Events
This two day conference will act as a global meeting point for companies that operate on the CO2 market. The schedule includes presentations on the latest projects and climate developments. Specialists such as the Trade Fair will attend the conference which makes the conference an ideal opportunity for business transactions on the CO2 market.
Location: Global Carbon Market Fair & Conference, Cologne, Germany
Date: 26-28 May 2010
This event promises to be a major global bio energy meeting based on the concept of ‘Taking you from Know-How to Show-How’. The World Bioenergy conference aims to promote the implementation of bioenergy technologies. For this purpose, conference sessions, field excursions, tradeshows and commercial experiences are scheduled in the two days conference.
Location: Elmia, Jönköping, Sweden
Date: 25-27 May 2010
The SETAC Europe Annual Meeting is Europe’s biggest meeting point on environmental toxicology and chemistry. It is an ideal opportunity to expand your network and knowledge since the event is attended by over 2000 researchers, regulators and scientists from academia, business and governments and touches upon all the major topics on environmental sciences through exhibitions and sessions.
Location: Palacio de Congresos y Exposiciones, Seville, Spain
Date: 23-27 May 2010
Added to Vacancies
Randstad CPE is looking for a consultant that preferably has a degree in civil engineering or chemical engineering with a minimum of two years of experience in waste PFI procurement or in waste process engineering including technology review and assessment experience. Strong skills in report writing, analytic and computer skills is also required.
Location: Glaslow, Germany
Deadline: Not provided. Job posted on March 29 2010
UNEP is looking for a senior environmental affairs officer with an advanced university degree in natural and/or environmental sciences and a minimum of ten years of working experience dealing with environmental issues. The officer will have to its main task to supervise, coordinate and support in substance the operation of the regional activities which includes various tasks and responsibilities.
Location: Paris, France
Deadline: 19 April 2010
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 General Court or ECJ
Leonardo Massai (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Iram Velji (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Marco van der Harst (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)