EEL Newsservice 2007/10, 23 May 2007

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Added to Case Law

* Case C-508/04, Commission v. Austria
On 10 May 2007, the Court decided that Austria has failed to fulfil its obligations under Directive 92/43/EEC on the conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora. According to the Commission five provinces in Austria had not transposed a number of the Directive’s provisions completely or correctly.
Sector: Nature

* Case C-252/05, Thames Water Utilities v. South East London Division, Bromley Magistrates’ Court
The national court made a reference for a preliminary ruling under article 234 concerning the interpretation of the term waste in Council Directive 75/442/EEC and its amendment 91/271/EEC concerning urban waste water. The question was whether waste water which escapes from a sewerage network constitutes waste within the meaning of this Directive. The ECJ ruled that it does, regardless of whether it spills by accident or on purpose.
Sector: Waste
Added to Policy Areas, Air
* WWF: German and British old industry the dirtiest  
In May 2007, WWF published the report ‘Dirty Thirty’, which ranks the most polluting power stations in Europe. All of the dirtiest power stations are coal-fired. The worst polluting stations are in Germany and the United Kingdom, who have ten of the dirtiest plants each, followed by Poland who has four.
Added to Policy Areas, Climate Change
* IPCC Report: Climate Policy not excessively expensive
We have enough technical capabilities to keep the effects of climate change limited to a raise of maximum 2 degrees Celsius. It would cost the average world citizen not more than 3% of income by 2030. These are the most important conclusions of the Working Group III of the IPCC in a report entitled ‘Mitigation of Climate Change’ on technical and economical research, which was released in Bangkok on 4 May 2007. Other significant paragraphs regard construction of buildings and the sectors transport and agriculture.

* EEA Report: ‘EU greenhouse gas emissions drop in 2005’
The European Environmental Agency report ‘Annual European Community greenhouse gas inventory 1990-2005 and inventory report 2007’ will only be released in June 2007, yet some of the most important conclusions have already been released in the first week of May. The EEA claims greenhouse gas emissions in the EU-15 in 2005 have dropped with 0.8% in comparison to 2004 and with 1.5% compared to 1990. The countries that show the largest decrease are Germany, Finland and The Netherlands, which all concentrated on replacing the use of fossil fuels in the production of public heat and electricity.

* Oceans absorb less greenhouse gases
An extensive four-year survey on Antarctica by scientists from the University of East Anglia (UEA), the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and the Max-Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry has shown that the Southern Ocean is able to absorb ever less carbon dioxide. The development is due to the saturation of the ocean, which is one of the largest carbon sinks of the Earth, accountable for 15% of the absorption of all human carbon emissions
Added to Policy Areas, Dangerous Substances
* The Stockholm Convention’s COP-3 meeting
From 30 April to 4 May 2007, the third Conference of Parties (COP) on the Stockholm Convention on POPs was held in Dakar, Senegal. On the annotated provisional agenda of this meeting there were 12 points to be addressed, such as measures to reduce or eliminate releases of unintentional production/wastes/intentional production, how to deal with non-compliance and the financial resources.

Added to Policy Areas, Energy
* EP votes for revision of the Euratom Treaty
On 10 May 2007, a large majority of the European Parliament voted, during its first reading, for the revision of the Euratom Treaty and increasing their powers to nuclear energy policy. This is due to the fact that operational safety of nuclear power plants, management of radioactive waste storage or disposal facilities and decommissioning of facilities cannot be dealt with sufficiently, under current legislation. Because nuclear energy is increasing in importance the responsibility should shift from the national authorities to the EU, under the co-decision procedure.

* EU creates Network of Energy Security Correspondents
With the creation of the Network of Energy Security Correspondents (NESCO), the EU is hoping for improved cooperation with its main energy producing partners in order to better secure Europe’s energy supply. The group, consisting of representatives of the European Commission, Council Secretariat and EU Member States, was endorsed by the European Council of December 2006.

* Renewables: ‘Wind energy is the way forward’
The wind industry believes it can contribute considerably in helping the EU achieve its tough targets on renewables. In March, the European Council agreed that an ambitious 20% of total energy needs should be met by means of non-fossil energy resources such as hydro, solar and of course wind by 2020. The European Wind Energy Association believes in a contribution of as much as 16% to total EU electricity generation.
Added to National Pages, the Netherlands
* Rotterdam harbour to halve its emissions by 2025
Rotterdam and its harbour are responsible for over 25 percent of the total Dutch CO2 emissions. The city and the harbour company, both participating in the Rotterdam Climate Initiative that was launched on 10 May 2007, have promised they will cut their emissions by 50 percent before 2025. In order to achieve this goal, the Rotterdam Climate Initiative will invest 50 million euro and is hoping for a state contribution of 400 million euro.

Added to National Pages, Switzerland
* Environmental Performance Review
In May 2007, the OECD published the Swiss Environmental Performance Review of 2007, which is a follow up to an earlier one that was published in 1998. In this report the national objectives and international commitments in relation to the environment and sustainable development are examined. Thereby it points out the great pressure that Switzerland experiences through its population density and strong economy. The report also stresses that, in many respects, Switzerland is one of the best performers in fighting pollution. However, there is definitely room for improvement, for instance in the field climate change prevention and air pollution.
Added to Events
* The 3rd Annual European Energy Policy Conference
This event creates a forum for honest ideas exchange between stakeholders from across the EU and beyond and policy-makers from member state and EU-level.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date: 9-10 October 2007

* The national environment day (in Dutch)
During this day the main issue is the new impulse of the Dutch environmental policy. Thereby, participants will look for a way to turn inspiring aspirations into concrete results.
Location: Provinciehuis Zuid-Holland, The Hague, the Netherlands.
Date: 22 June 2007

* Citizens panel on environment and Europe (in Dutch)
The citizens’ panel is called ‘a better environment starts with Europe’. During this panel, Dutch citizens with and interest in Europe and/or the environment, with different backgrounds, are asked to advise the Dutch ministry of environment.
Location: Korbee & Hovelynck, De Bilt, the Netherlands
Date: 2 June 2007

Added to Job Postings

* EEL website
We are looking for a trainee who would like to help us over the coming months to improve the EEL website and collect information for this EEL News Service. Excellent knowledge of English language is a must. If you are interested, please contact us for more information (contact details on the EEL website).

* T.M.C. Asser Institute for International and European Law
– Medewerk(st)er Projectenburo tbv inleiden en uitvoeren van acquisitie, voorbereiding, planning, afstemming en organisatie van projecten;Het administratief beheren en afwikkelen van projecten alsmede het geven van secretariële en logistieke ondersteuning aan de projectleiders.
Location: The Hague
Deadline: 18 June 2007

* European Chemicals Region Network
ECRN is looking for a director of the ECRN network secretariat. The new secretariat will provide technical and administrative support to the bodies of the association.
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Deadline: 31 May 2007

* WWF International
WWF International is looking for a manager, business intelligence, who will research company profiles, provide information on business relations, assess trends, risks and opportunities for WWF engagement.
Location: Gland, Switzerland
Deadline: 23 May 2007

* Greenpeace
Greenpeace is looking for a political advisor on climate change, who will provide strategic direction to the Greenpeace climate change campaign, particularly in relation to intergovernmental treaties and negotiations, business fore and international networks of NGOs.
Location: Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Deadline: 20 June 2007

Wybe Th. Douma (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Jens Hamer (Academy of European Law, Trier)

Leonardo Massai (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Ruben Vermeeren (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)
Sara Woods (T.M.C. Asser Institute, The Hague)

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