Dutch Presidency faces tough environmental tests

The European Environmental Bureau (EEB) has presented its regular ten environmental tests to the incoming Dutch Presidency. ‘Greening’ the Lisbon agenda heads up the list of EEB priorities.

In a
memorandumsent to the Dutch
government, the European Environmental Bureau (EEB) has presented
its regular ten environmental tests to the incoming EU Presidency.

The EEB's top priority for the next six months is to 'green' the
EU agenda for economic growth set out by EU leaders four years ago
in Lisbon (for background info on 'greening' the Lisbon process,


The Green NGO calls on Member Sates to give the Commission "a
clear mandate" to put the EU strategy for sustainable development
at the heart of economic growth as a key driver for positive
investment. This, it believes, should be reflected in the EU's
financial perspectives for 2007-2013, which should include
environmental quality criteria for areas such as cohesion policy,
research and competitiveness.

"We want the Dutch government to initiate positive investment
proposals that combine environmental, social and economic
objectives, such as in housing and transport," said John Hontelez,
EEB's secretary general.

Among the EEB's priorities are:

  • Cutting environmentally damaging subsidies
  • Seeking a breakthrough on the chemicals registration and
    authorisation regime (REACH) currently under review
  • Pressing on with other ongoing issues such as fighting climate
    change, banning cadmium in batteries and safeguarding the quality
    of ground water

Earlier, the EEB's published its

assessment of the environmental results of the outgoing Irish Presidencybased on the same ten green
tests. The conclusions state that the Irish Presidency has made "an
important contribution to the future of the European Union by
concluding the work on a new Constitution," but regretted that it
has gone along with the current political trend to measure all
proposals with "the holy mantra of competitiveness". It therefore
concludes negatively on the Irish Presidency's record on
sustainable development.

The EEB's ten green tests are presented to each incoming
Presidency and are accompanied by an evaluation of the outgoing



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