Energy & Environment Archives

  • Fertilisers: Feeding agriculture’s growing needs

    Agrifood 09-09-2011

    World fertiliser production is expected to soar to keep up with rising food and biofuel output, but this also triggers environmental problems as fertiliser sucks up energy and trigger water and soil pollution.

  • Efficient energy: Making savings at source

    Special Report | Regional Policy 19-08-2011

    European efforts to increase energy efficiency have so far primarily focused on measures to improve end-use efficiency, and the potential to reduce huge losses that occur in the production and delivery of power have largely been ignored.

  • Intensive farming: Ecologically sustainable?

    Special Report | Agrifood 22-07-2011

    As demand for food rises along with the world's population, policymakers are looking at ways of intensifying crop production while reducing the negative impact of farming on the environment.

  • Consumer empowerment: Helping shoppers to buy green [Archived]

    Special Report | Health 13-07-2011

    As pressure mounts to lead sustainable lifestyles, policymakers and companies alike are mulling new ways of encouraging shoppers to buy green. But consumer groups warned against confronting shoppers with too much information and warned that companies' green claims are often not independently verified. 

  • Keeping cool with refrigerants: The F-gas review

    Sustainable Development 13-07-2011

    Fluorinated gases power the world's refrigerants and air conditioning systems, and make up around 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions. But if business continues as usual, by 2050 they could be responsible for between 9%-19% of global emissions, prompting EU policymakers to take action to contain leakage or even ban their use.

  • Eating green? Food, drinks and the environment [Archived]

    Health 08-07-2011

    Food multinationals are showing increasing interest in measuring their water and carbon footprint but the proliferation of green claims often leaves consumers wondering about sustainable food choices.

  • Behind closed doors: Air quality in buildings

    Special Report | Climate change 15-06-2011

    Restrictions on tobacco smoke and the Asbestos scandal have put indoor air quality under the spotlight in the recent past, resulting in tough policies to stop damage to human health. While tobacco continues to be the biggest health culprit, nowadays attention is also turning to "chemical cocktails," toxic fumes from heating and cooking, and damp and mould caused by poor ventilation.

  • The Polish EU Presidency: Budget and solidarity [Archived]

    Cities & regions 10-06-2011

    Paving the way for an "ambitious" agreement on the 2014-2020 budget, energy security and the European Union's Eastern neighbourhood are all key priorities of the Polish EU Presidency during the second half of 2011. The Poles, for their part, have pulled all the stops to ensure that the Union remains committed to redistributive policies at a time of economic austerity.

  • What goes around comes around: Recycling and climate change

    Trade & Society 26-04-2011

    Recycling has become a central part of the EU's climate change strategy by helping the bloc to tackle the nearly three billion tonnes of waste produced by Europe annually, much of which enters the atmosphere in the form of CO2 and methane emissions from landfill sites and incineration plants.

  • Aviation biofuels: A pie in the sky?

    Special Report | Transport 14-03-2011

    Airlines have committed to ramping up their use of biofuels in the belief that they can contribute to achieving the sector's pledges on carbon-neutral growth. For 2050, the EU foresees 40% use of "sustainable low carbon fuels" in aviation.

  • Who runs EU energy policies?

    Special Report | Public Affairs 03-03-2011

    The EU is putting in place an ambitious energy policy in a bid to improve security of supplies and achieve bold CO2 reduction targets. But how does the EU decision-making process function on energy-related issues? And what is the role of the industry sector and interest groups?

  • Rio+20: Dancing to the tune of the green economy

    Special Report | Sustainable Development 24-02-2011

    The Rio Earth Summit in May 2012 will try to set a global vision on greening the economy, with France leading European calls to establish a brand new World Environmental Organisation (WEO).

  • EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020

    Regional Policy 01-02-2011

    The cohesion policy (or regional policy) of the European Union provides a framework for financing a wide range of projects and investments with the aim of encouraging economic growth in EU member states and their regions. The policy is reviewed by the EU institutions once every seven years. The next round of programmes is to be launched in 2014.

  • Water efficiency: Saving the blue gold

    Special Report | Sustainable Development 15-12-2010

    The European Commission is planning measures to rein in water use, with a particular focus on savings in agriculture, buildings and industrial processes.

  • Services of General Interest in the EU

    Sustainable Development 01-12-2010

    Water, energy, health, telecoms and transport are among the most widely-known examples of services that public authorities consider of general interest and subject to specific public service obligations. 

  • Environmental liability: Applying the ‘polluter pays’ principle

    Climate change 23-11-2010

    Successive man-made disasters have seen the EU adopt rules to enforce the 'polluter pays principle' on companies responsible for major environmental damage. 

  • Europe’s southern gas corridor: The great pipeline race

    Med & South 11-10-2010

    Several pipeline projects are competing with one another to bring to life the southern gas corridor – a vague blueprint to supply Europe with gas from the Caspian and the Middle East. EURACTIV takes a look at the various European initiatives, including their common competitor: Russia's South Stream project.

  • Consumers: Buying green?

    Special Report | Health 07-10-2010

    Environmentally-friendly goods are often overpriced for many consumers – and as the economic crisis continues to bite, policymakers are mulling tax incentives to make green shopping more affordable.

  • Energy efficiency: The EU’s new action plan

    Energy 01-09-2010

    The European Union has proposed new energy efficiency measures to make good on its pledge to combat climate change and reduce its dependency on imported oil and gas.

  • Regions fighting climate change

    Regional Policy 17-08-2010

    Led by cities, EU regions are playing a frontline role in the fight against climate change as they make key investment decisions regarding the new generation of clean energy and transport projects.

  • Integrating renewables into the electricity grid

    Special Report | Energy 04-06-2010

    Europe has put in place legislation to promote renewable energies but is now faced with the challenge of integrating increasing amounts of intermittent power sources like solar and wind into the electricity grid, running the risk of destabilising it.

  • Regional policy in the EU: A midterm healthcheck

    Regional Policy 31-05-2010

    EU regional policy is designed to level out economic and social disparities in the 27 member states. At the halfway point of its current regional budgetary period (2007-2013), the European Commission conducted a review assessing how well each EU country is faring in its use of cohesion funds.

  • Food information for consumers

    Special Report | Science & Policymaking 10-05-2010

    The EU is considering strict new food labelling rules to help consumers make healthy choices and tackle obesity, which has become a serious public health concern.

  • Can the EU revive global climate talks?

    Climate change 04-05-2010

    Debate on how to cut carbon dioxide emissions has been hotting up in Europe, in part due to the international community's failure to ink a successor deal to the Kyoto Protocol at the UNFCCC conferences in Copenhagen and Durban. But what are the options - and obstacles to a new pact?