Opinion Factsheet  

Towards sustainable neighbourhoods and small communities - Environment policy below municipal level

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Opinion Number: CDR 3195/2019
Rapporteur: ARMAO Gaetano
Commission: ENVE
Status: Adopted
Date: 12/02/2020
 
THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS



- aims to make sure that the needs of all types of communities are taken into account in EU environmental policies; underlines that this opinion focuses on sub-municipal communities such as neighbourhoods as part of an urban municipality or villages as part of a rural municipality; asserts that important environmental specificities can be found both at and below the municipal level;

- stresses, in particular, the need to take into account specific territorial situations, which encounter particular environmental challenges. On account of their remoteness, these areas sometimes possess unique natural features that give them disproportionate ecological importance: small islands, sparsely or underpopulated areas, mountain or lake areas;

- acknowledges the varied contexts within which small communities find themselves, ranging from urban to rural areas, from densely to sparsely populated areas, and from wealthy to deprived areas;

- maintains that the sustainable communities concept should be aimed at regenerating poor or vulnerable areas by combining social and environmental objectives;

- strongly believes that the EU should consider the specific needs and contributions of small and sub-municipal communities in the formulation and implementation of its environmental policies; considers that the successful implementation of many EU and national environmental policies depends on their ownership by, and the contribution of, sub-municipal communities;

- proposes to identify mechanisms for taking sub-municipal issues into account in the formulation of CoR opinions and for bringing them to the attention of the EU institutions and bodies;

- commits to a dialogue with the European Commission, including in the framework of the Technical Platform for Cooperation on the Environment, to ensure that small communities below the municipal level are adequately taken into consideration in the implementation of specific EU environmental policies. This could build on existing efforts by DG ENV and other DGs to provide guidance documents and tools focused on small communities and neighbourhoods;

- emphasises the importance of enabling sub-municipal actors to access EU funding programmes.

Importance

High
Medium
Low
 

Meeting with Euromontana on mountain communities

The Rapporteur, Mr Armao (IT/EPP), Vicepresident and Minister for Economy of Sicily, met with Ms Clotteau, Director of Euromontana, European Association of Mountain Areas.
The meeting focused on how the opinion could take into account small mountain communities and their specificities.

 
07 Oct
 

Follow-up Stakeholders consultation "Towards sustainable neighbourhoods and small communities - Environment policy below municipal level"

At the link below you can find the video recording of the consultation and the PDF versions of all the presentations.
The rapporteur accepts written contributions till Monday 7 October (11am).

 
30 Sep