Kira Taylor

Circular materials 23-09-2021

Campaigners worry at delays in EU sustainable product policy

Ecodesign and energy labelling rules on everyday products could save consumers billions and help the EU meet its climate targets, but a lack of staff and resources means the European Commission is slow to put them forward, according to a report by environmental organisations.

The Green Brief: Good morning Brussels! Can we have your points please?

In many ways life in the European Parliament is very similar to Eurovision. There are lots of languages, a fanfare of cultures and an obscure points system that no one understands, but just sort of accepts. Here's how those points will impact the FIt for 55 package.

Energy ministers to hold first exchange on EU’s 2030 climate laws

In their first meeting since the European Commission tabled an overhaul of climate legislation in July, EU energy ministers are due to discuss two major files that will drive Europe’s push towards clean energy, according to a room document seen by EURACTIV.

Collecting more and better: the final push to reach 100% glass circularity

Glass packaging already has one of the highest recycling rates in Europe, but better collection of a greater amount of glass is needed to meet Europe’s goal of a 75% recycling rate and, eventually, reach complete circularity.

EU aims to tackle waste packaging with new legislation

Europe aims to cut down on waste as quickly as possible in order to halt the overconsumption that is damaging the planet and adding to climate change. But despite previous attempts, waste packaging is still on the rise in Europe.
Climate change 17-09-2021

Rich states fall short of $100 billion climate finance goal

Wealthy countries fell short of the promised $100 billion of climate finance provided to developing countries in 2019 and are expected to miss the target again for 2020, according to the head of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
Climate change 15-09-2021

US needs to step up on climate finance ahead of COP26, says EU chief

The United States and other rich nations need to close the climate financing gap in order to increase the chances of success at the COP26 UN climate summit in November, the President of the European Commission has said.

The Green Brief: Merkel’s climate ‘realpolitik’ legacy

When she came to power, Angela Merkel was quickly dubbed the “climate chancellor” after she prioritised global warming during Germany’s G8 and EU presidency in 2007. Sixteen years later, her questionable track record speaks more of climate realpolitik instead.

EU considering sanctions on companies liable for environmental damage abroad

The European Commission is considering sanctions to tackle environmental damage and human rights abuses in Europe’s supply chains, according to Nils Behrndt, acting deputy director-general at the executive's justice department.
Climate change 13-09-2021

European cities must adapt to climate change, EU environment chief says

European cities need to adapt as global warming worsens, leading to more floods and fires on the continent, according to the European environment commissioner, speaking on Thursday (9 September).

The Green Brief: Courtrooms – the new climate battleground

A recent ruling by a Dutch court has highlighted a growing trend of citizens bringing climate-related cases against companies and governments.
Energy 07-09-2021

Western Balkans pressed to tackle deadly air pollution from coal

The Europe Union needs to put more pressure on the Western Balkans to decarbonise their coal-fuelled energy system as pollution levels remain well above compliance thresholds, according to a report published on Tuesday (7 September).
Energy 03-09-2021

Energy Charter Treaty cannot be used in intra-EU disputes, rules top court

An international treaty used by polluting energy companies to claim compensation from governments who thwart their investments was ruled incompatible with EU law by the Court of Justice of the European Union on Thursday (2 September).
Climate change 02-09-2021

Extinction Rebellion activists occupy WWF, alleging human rights violations

Climate protestors occupied WWF’s Living Planet Centre in London on Tuesday (31 August), calling for a decolonisation of conservation, as part of a two-week wave of protests that have brought parts of the UK capital to a standstill.
Energy 01-09-2021

Lights out for inefficient bulbs under new EU standards

Certain fluorescent and halogen light bulbs are being banned as of Wednesday (1 September) as new ecodesign and labelling rules come into force across the European Union.

The Green Brief: Floods, heat and fire

From deadly flooding that hit Germany and Belgium in July to the heatwaves and forest fires that set Southern Europe ablaze in August, this year has seen no shortage of climate-related disasters.

Carbon market largely unaffected by EU border levy, think tanks say

Over half of the heavily criticised free allowances, which allow certain EU companies to emit CO2 without paying, will remain unchanged under current plans for the tool designed to replace them, according to climate think-tanks.
Energy 30-08-2021

‘Game-changer’ for geothermal energy as UK plant unlocks vast supply of lithium

A geothermal power plant in the UK has discovered the highest concentration of lithium ever found in geothermal fluid, opening the door to a new business model for the renewable energy source.
Energy 27-08-2021

Permit for Germany’s newest coal-fired power plant was invalid, court rules

Germany’s youngest coal-fired power plant, Datteln 4, was constructed based on an invalid development plan, a German court ruled on Thursday (26 August), following a case brought against the plant in the north-west of the country.
Climate change 25-08-2021

Opaque net zero pledges not enough to tackle the climate crisis, experts say

Net zero pledges have grown in popularity in the last few years, but there is a worrying over-reliance on carbon removals without enough clarification on how they are used, experts have warned ahead of the COP26 UN climate summit in November.
Energy 29-07-2021

Climate legislation overhaul opens door to geothermal, but not wide enough

The recent overhaul of European climate legislation to slash greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030 is a good first step towards supporting geothermal energy, but goes little further, according to a former Bulgarian environment minister.

The climate cost of the new space race

Space tourism has become a reality in the last month, with two billionaires jetting off to brush the edge of space in ground-breaking technology, but the CO2 emissions of such trips could carry a heavy price for the climate.

US lawmakers push carbon border tariff similar to EU’s CBAM

Democrats in the US Senate are considering a "polluter import fee", similar to the EU’s recently unveiled carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM), to help fund President Joe Biden's $3.5 trillion recovery package.

The Green Brief: EU climate package déjà vu?

For those who have been following EU energy and climate policy over the past five years, the European Commission’s ‘Fit for 55’ package has a distinct whiff of déjà vu.