Sustainable Development

Aviation 29-11-2017

‘We can live with this’: How Airbus was allowed to write its own climate rules

E-mail exchanges between the European Commission and Airbus show how the European aircraft manufacturer was offered privileged access to the EU decision-making process, allowing it to write its own environmental rules, writes Andrew Murphy.

Circular economy 21-11-2017

Microplastics, macro problems

Tackling the visible impact of plastic pollution is one thing. But if we’re serious about finding a long-term solution, revealing the invisible impact is imperative, writes the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Jocelyn Blériot, calling for a ban on oxo-degradable plastics that are still widely used in carrier bags.

Circular economy 08-11-2017

Putting words into action: Join forces to drive circular economy

Is the European Commission doing enough on the circular economy? Björn-Erik Lönn and Sören Enholm explain that buyers play an important role in creating it, so we have to make sure consumers and purchasers are empowered to make sustainable choices.

Climate change 02-11-2017

Gas lobby keeps Europe hooked on fossil fuels

As the COP23 UN climate talks open in Bonn, the European Commission and EU member states are embarking on a massive spending spree to subsidise new gas infrastructure that will make it impossible to achieve the global warming targets agreed two years ago in Paris, writes Pascoe Sabido.

Circular economy 25-10-2017

Circular economy success needs more than ambitious policies

Voluntary agreements are hardly a new concept but industry action on this front can drive real progress, particularly when it comes to the circular economy, writes MEP Martina Dlabajová.

Future EU 18-10-2017

TOGETHER for a stronger, progressive family!

Socialism still has a long way to go. But following recent elections in various European countries, it is clear that progressive forces must regenerate themselves, write Gianni Pittella and Sergei Stanishev. Gianni Pittella is the president of the Socialists and Democrats Group in the European Parliament, and Sergei Stanishev is the president of the Party of European Socialists. Our values of …

Energy 18-10-2017

‘Energy dash for biomass’ risks wasting potential of EU’s bioeconomy

By failing to take a holistic approach and treat the LULUCF and renewable energy dossiers as separate and distinct issues, the EU is slicing Europe’s bioeconomy up like a piece of salami, warns Sylvain Lhôte.

How environmental crime became an EU security priority for 2018-21

In May 2017, EU justice ministers decided that environmental crimes – including wildlife trafficking and waste crimes – would be one of the EU’s ten priorities for the fight against serious and organised crime during the 2018-21 policy cycle. Catherine Bearder evokes how this decision came to being.

Circular economy 16-10-2017

Member states have no real plan for the circular economy, they are secretly sabotaging it

It’s high time for a circular economy in Europe, according to member states. So why are they on course to obstruct waste laws? This kind of doublespeak undermines the circular economy but also faith in politicians, writes Piotr Barczak.

Agrifood 05-10-2017

All fish sold in the EU must be of high standard

The European Commission needs to work out more effective rules to ensure that only fish meeting high social and environmental standards can enter the EU market, as well as a better implementation of the EU control regime in general, argue Linnéa Engström and Javier Garat.

Circular economy 03-10-2017

Make or break time: Will the Commission make Europe a true industrial and climate leader?

The European Commission’s new Industrial Policy Strategy is a good start to provide the framework for Europe’s businesses to secure their position as a leading economy in the future, but the hard work is only just beginning, warns Seppo Parvi.

Circular economy 27-09-2017

Squaring the circle of plastics recycling

The snail pace so far in terms of implementation of the EU Action Plan on the Circular Economy is embarrassing, write Anders Wijkman and Catia Bastioli.

Climate change 06-09-2017

Will the European Parliament take the high road on climate and forests?

Ahead of a European Parliament vote on land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF), Hannah Aho explains how MEPs have both strengthened and weakened draft forest rules she says are essential in the fight against climate change.

Climate change 29-08-2017

Europe’s dramatic summer gives a foretaste of ‘super heatwaves’ to come

While Europe is recovering from an unusually warm summer, a new study warns that heatwaves with temperatures of above 40°C are expected to become more frequent, with some regions of Eastern Europe hit by new super heatwaves of above 55°C, writes Wendel Trio.

Climate change 05-07-2017

EU trade policy: Time to end corporate protectionism

The EU-Japan trade agreement, likely to be concluded in Brussels this week, is the latest example of an EU trade policy that benefits global corporations at the expense of people and the planet, writes Kees Kodde.

A sustainable Europe through business unusual

As Estonia begins its EU presidency on 1 July, business as usual won’t cut it. We need business unusual and Estonia's successful track record in the last 25 years gives us hope that it will be able to make its mark, writes Lauri Tammiste.

Future of mobility 29-06-2017

Does car sharing really reduce car use?

Concerns that sharing schemes do not deliver a net reduction in car use are not supported by evidence, writes Greg Archer. Now, digitisation and the sharing economy provide an opportunity to reduce the number of vehicles in our cities even further, he contends.

Development Policy 28-06-2017

Sustainable development must be overarching EU objective

The EU should throw its full weight behind the UN's 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and take a global lead in its implementation. Former President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy explains why sustainable development should be the bloc's top priority.

EU budget for climate action: Time to wake the sleeping beauty

The European Commission will publish its ‘Reflection paper on the future of EU finances’ on 28 June. Against a background of renewed commitments from European leaders towards climate action, the EU budget must be reformed to comply with the requirements of the Paris Agreement, writes Markus Trilling.

Climate change 15-06-2017

Forest accounting rules put EU’s climate credibility at risk

Forest mitigation should be measured using a scientifically-objective approach, not allowing countries to hide the impacts of policies that increase net emissions, writes a group of environmental scientists led by Dr Joanna I House.

Economy & Jobs 13-06-2017

Commission must double efforts towards a sustainable financial system

The European Commission is taking steps towards a more sustainable financial system in Europe, but must double its efforts to create a truly resilient system that Europe needs, writes Anne van Schaik.

EU takes the helm in a year of ocean mobilisation

2017 will be remembered as the turning point in how the international community works together to protect the ocean, write Karmenu Vella and Isabella Lövin.

Electricity 01-06-2017

Energy islands: Symbols of transformation and independence

Malta epitomises the value of islands in leading the transition to cleaner sources of energy, and ultimately in symbolising the potential for energy independence, writes Stuart Reigeluth.

Climate change 17-05-2017

EU has opportunity to seize global leadership on forests and climate

Former ‘climate heroes’ France, Finland, Sweden and Austria are fighting tooth and nail to weaken EU land accounting rules, also known as the Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF) Regulation, writes Hannah Mowat.