Committee of the Regions delegation visits European Environment Agency

Members of the Committee of the Regions' (CoR) Commission on Environment, Climate Change and Energy (ENVE) participated in a study-visit to the European Environment Agency (EEA) in Copenhagen on 3 September, initiated by Neil Swannick (PES), Member of the Manchester City Council. The aim of the visit was to reinforce a closer cooperation with the EEA. The group also visited environment city projects of the city of Copenhagen, winner of the 2014 European Green Capital Award.

As an agency of the European Union the task of the EEA is to provide evidence and independent information on the environment and assess how far EU policy has been put into practise. So far the EEA has increasingly published more environmental data explicitly referring to the local and regional level a request the CoR had made back in 2012.
Meeting experts from the EEA in the fields of air pollution, noise, climate change and waste the ENVE delegation* underlined the need for further regionalisation of environmental and policy implementation-related information. On the regional and local level this data serves as an important base for regional and local authorities to improve their environmental policy.
The ENVE Commission members also met with Hans Bruyninckx, Executive Director of the EEA, and debated the possibility and scope of a closer cooperation between the CoR and the EEA. Both institutions are closely following the implementation of the 7th Environment Action Programme (EAP).It was argued that this partnership will not only benefit the local and regional authorities but will also support the EEA's efforts to build more regional and decentralised information systems.
At the invitation of Morten Kabell, "Technical and Environmental Mayor"** of the city of Copenhagen, the ENVE members also visited environmental city projects of the Danish capital, who won the European Green Capital Award in 2014. This included a visit to the newly opened Skt. Kjelds Quarter, which is Copenhagen’s first climate adapted neighbourhood that combines social and technical solutions in order to create a climate resilient urban area.
*The CoR/ENVE delegation was composed of Neil Swannick (PES/UK), Marialuisa Coppola (EPP/IT), Csaba Borboly (EPP/RO), Adam Struzik (EPP/PL), Kadri Tilleman (EPP/EE), Hermann Kuhn (PES/DE), Mariana Gaju (PES/RO), Frederik Cutajar (PES/MT), Declan McDonnell (ALDE/IE), Satu Tietari (FI/ALDE), Jens Ive (ALDE/DK), Linda Gillham (UK/EA), Daiva Matoniene (ECR/LT)
**The position of an"Technical and Environmental Mayor" is installed in Copenhagen since many years, with the goal to transform Copenhagen into a greener city with a higher level of livability. This reflects the high priority the city gives to environmental issues.