Timothy Spence

A Taranis drone prepares for takeoff at an airfield in England. [© 2014 BAE Systems]
Transport 23-07-2014

Eurodrones: too politically loaded a venture for Europe?

The downing of the Malaysian Airlines flight in eastern Ukraine has highlighted how unmanned aircraft could help Europe when it comes to surveillance operations in warzones.

Transport 14-07-2014

New EU rules seen as too timid to reduce airport noise

SPECIAL REPORT / New rules on aviation noise that are due to take hold across the European Union in 2016 fall short of what is needed to protect people living near airports, the leader of a leading civil action groups says.

Agrifood 04-07-2013

CAP 2014-2020: A long road to reform

Politicians approved in June 2013 an agreement on the first large reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) in a decade, after months of haggling over how ambitious to make the policy on overhauling direct payments, ending quotas, and making farmers more environmentally accountable. The long road to a deal means that many policies will not come into force before 2015.

Agrifood 27-06-2013

‘Damn tough’ deal on CAP leaves little room for celebration

EU negotiators sealed a deal yesterday (26 June) on future farm policy after months of haggling over how ambitious the policy would be on ending quotas, overhauling direct payments to farmers and making agriculture more environmentally responsible.

Copenhagen Airport applies noise lessons to cut air pollution

SPECIAL REPORT / When trade unionists began raising concerns about the health impact of pollution on airfield ground and service crews, including possible links to cancer, the Copenhagen Airport moved to restrict aircraft engine use and shift towards greener service vehicles.

Agrifood 06-06-2013

Farm groups urge CAP deal by end of June

Farmers’ organisations are pressing EU negotiators to finalise a deal on the future agricultural policy amid growing concern that an agreement will not be reached before the end of June, further delaying implementation of Europe’s biggest programme.

Trade-offs: What’s good for the climate may not be good for the air

SPECIAL REPORT / From wood stoves to diesel engines, the European Union has promoted fossil fuel alternatives and technology to help meet its obligations to reduce carbon dioxide emissions blamed for climate change. But these are also contribute to dirty air, leaving regulators to figure out some legislative repair work.

Brexit 04-06-2013

British survey exposes ignorance of air quality challenge

SPECIAL REPORT / When a London anti-pollution organisation polled British lawmakers about the greatest risks to public health, most MPs were wrong, ranking traffic accidents or heavy drinking ahead of air pollution as a leading killer of Britons.

Transport 03-06-2013

From coal to cars, EU states fail to combat air pollution

SPECIAL REPORT / Economic heavyweights France and Germany continue to violate limits of one of Europe’s most common urban pollutants, nitrogen oxides, despite their legal obligations to clean up the air.

Business summit underscores EU’s broader gender deficit

Europe’s most influential business lobby will have its first female leader starting in July, but as BusinessEurope holds its annual summit over the next two days, men will dominate at the podium.

Development Policy 14-05-2013

Human rights concerns loom as EU hosts Mali conference

Europe and its global partners that are being asked to help finance a €4-billion development programme in Mali should be pressuring the government to address the executions, torture other abuses occurring in the divided country, human rights advocates say.

Agrifood 08-05-2013

G8 under pressure to rethink biofuel mandates

EXCLUSIVE / Leaders of the EU and their partners in the G8 nations are under mounting pressure to reconsider their support for biofuel targets amid concern that plant oil production competes with food output in poor countries.

EU under pressure to toughen ship recycling regulation

In the Bangladesh port city of Chittagong, activists want the EU to get tough on the booming ship recycling industry that has become notorious for its poor labour and environmental safety records. New EU legislation is already in the making and could be finalised in June.

Development Policy 26-04-2013

Swift move by EU helped ease nutrition crisis, UN official says

SPECIAL REPORT / Faced with a worsening drought and food crisis in Africa’s Sahel region last year, the United Nations got a sudden infusion of EU cash to provide nutritional help to 1.5 million pregnant women and children.

Agrifood 25-04-2013

US plan for EU-style food aid policy seen as boost for farmers, nutrition

SPECIAL REPORT / The Obama administration is proposing a major overhaul of food aid that would for the first time put America’s overseas policy in line with European practices of providing cash and other alternatives to bulk shipments.

Agrifood 24-04-2013

Poorer nations face an unwanted European import: obesity

SPECIAL REPORT / Developing nations that are struggling with food supply uncertainty and malnutrition increasingly face a health challenge that is all too well known in Europe: obesity.

Development Policy 23-04-2013

Rising costs pose challenge for poor nations’ vaccinations

SPECIAL REPORT / Rising drug costs and supply uncertainty threaten efforts to achieve universal immunisation after decades of steady progress in vaccinating African infants against crippling and deadly diseases, health workers say.

Development Policy 22-04-2013

EU plans new approach to tackle ‘worst form of poverty’

SPECIAL REPORT / The European Commission is calling for a more robust emphasis on the long-term nutritional needs of infants and mothers to address malnourishment, a leading cause of death in impoverished nations, a year after European auditors criticised the EU’s response to food insecurity in developing countries.

Development Policy 15-04-2013

African herdsmen use mobile phones for drought alerts

East African livestock herders are using mobile phones to send early warnings of drought, part of a new effort to avert disasters like the one two years ago that required a massive EU humanitarian response.

Development Policy 10-04-2013

EU pushing ‘old 90s script’ on next UN aid agenda

An architect of the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) has warned that the European Union runs the risk of overreach as it tries to shape the future international anti-poverty agenda.

Development Policy 09-04-2013

‘Difficult times’ in global fight against AIDS, TB and malaria

The organisation that finances the prevention and treatment of the AIDS virus and other global killers is urging top donors to provide an additional $15 billion (€11.5 billion) to fight infectious diseases over the next three years or risk reversing a decade of advances in care.

Development Policy 27-03-2013

Businesses seek upfront role in future development policy

Business associations in Europe and other advanced countries are seeking to put their imprint on a future global development framework, calling for a strong private-sector role in lifting poor nations out of poverty.

Millions won’t be celebrating World Water Day

Half of humans lack safe drinking water, while competition for water from agriculture and industry could put more people at risk in years to come, says a Portuguese lawyer who is the United Nations’ independent advocate for the right to water.

Agrifood 20-03-2013

Slovakia, Slovenia refuse to sign off on CAP deal

Agriculture ministers meeting in Brussels on Tuesday (19 March) forged an incomplete compromise farm policy ahead of key negotiations on the future of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), with Slovakia and Slovenia refusing to sign off on the deal.