Opinion Factsheet  

Environmental Implementation Review

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Opinion Number: CDR 836/2017
Rapporteur: COOPER Andrew Varah
Commission: ENVE
Status: Adopted
Date: 10/10/2017
 
following the Outlook opinion on "EU environment law: Better reporting and compliance", to issue recommendations on cooperation with the European Parliament and the Councilon better implementation in the context of the EIR, and on further developing the joint CoR/EC Technical Platform for Cooperation on the Environment as established in 2012;
issue recommendations on the European Commission horizontal findings and recommendations and other common elements/deficits of the 28 country specific EIR reports to be published in January 2017, and on the Presidency Conclusions of 28 February 2018;
issue recommendations towards the EC and Member States on involving local and regional authorities during/as follow-up to the country-specific dialogues and in the next EIR governance cycle;
issue recommendations on particular issues of the EIR, e.g. environmental governance, which the CoR would expect the EC to deepen, including in future possible EC issue paper, and in related possible Council debates under the next EU next Trio-Presidency.

Inter-institutional developments:

16/11/2017: EP adopted a motion for resolution.
Co-rapporteurs MEPs: Pietikäinen, Bonafè, Demesmaeker, Gerbrandy, Flanagan, Jávor.
The text adopted highlights the role of regional authorities in some Member States and supports the involvement of the CoR in the follow up.

04/04/2019: The European Commission adopted the first report of the Environmental Implementation Review. The Head of Unit of DG Environment in charge of implementation, Jon Codescu, presented the main findings to the ENVE Commission of the CoR, in presence of the rapporteur.

The country reports adopted by the Commission has increased comparability between Member States as requested by the CoR, allowing for a transparent, easily understandable illustration of the progress made on key implementation challenges by individual Member States, which has not resulted in additional reporting by Member States, regions or cities. The report reflects the ineffective coordination between local, regional and national authorities pointed out by the CoR: This ineffective coordination leads to unclear divisions of competencies and responsibilities, a lack of administrative capacity, insufficient financing and use of market based instruments, a lack of policy integration and policy coherence, a lack of knowledge and data and insufficient compliance assurance mechanisms. The report does not include climate change indicators, as requested by the CoR opinion.
http://ec.europa.eu/environment/eir/country-reports/index_en.htm

Evolution and highlights:

11/10/2017: The rapporteur participates (and moderates the second session) in the workshop on "Cities in transition - improving urban air quality. Launch of the EEA’s Air Quality in Europe 2017 report" organised in the framework of the Technical Platform for Cooperation on the Environment (DG Environment of the European Commission and the ENVE Commission of the CoR). The event is being hosted at the CoR during the European Week of Regions and Cities.
22-23/01/2018: The rapporteur participated as a speaker in the event on Peer Learning for Environmental Implementation organised by the European Commission in order to explore the opportunities of TAIEX-EIR Peer 2 Peer for environmental authorities. The following day the rapporteur participates in the 9th meeting of the Expert Group Greening the European Semester & EIR.
13-17/05/2019 The implementation of the environmental Law has been the topic of the EU Green Week 2019, with active participation of the CoR
www.eugreenweek.eu
On 17/05/2019, the rapporteur participated in the EESC experts hearing on the opinion NAT/759 A more constructive role for civil society in implementing environmental law
https://www.eesc.europa.eu/en/our-work/opinions-information-reports/opinions/more-constructive-role-civil-society-implementing-environmental-law-exploratory-opinion-request-european-commission
THE EUROPEAN COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS

- urges the European Commission to make climate change an important element of the next round of the EIR and to include climate change mitigation and adaptation as well the implementation of the Industrial Emissions Directive and REACH;

- recalls the pivotal role of local and regional authorities in tackling climate change and encourages in this respect the formulation and allocation of regional and local climate change targets, in addition to the Nationally Determined Contributions, as an important feature of delivering the Paris climate change obligations;

- recommends that the European Commission be more incisive in the EIR analysis and increase comparability between Member States, allowing for a transparent, easily understandable illustration of the progress made on key implementation challenges by individual Member States, which should not result in any additional reporting by Member States, regions or cities;

- stresses the need for proper involvement of local and regional authorities in the EIR national dialogues and urges the European Commission to provide guidelines to ensure the full participation of local and regional authorities;

- offers the European Commission close and structured cooperation for the whole EIR cycle, including activities by the Joint Technical Platform for Cooperation on the Environment; invites the European Parliament to cooperate closely on the EIR and on relevant future European Parliament implementation reports; underlines its preparedness to contribute to future EIR-related discussions held by the Council, informal meetings of Environment Ministers or other Council Presidency activities related to the EIR, and suggests exploring the possibility of organising issue-specific meetings in close cooperation with local and regional authorities and the European Commission's and the EP's national representations in different parts of the EU territory;

- recommends that the Environmental Implementation Reviews focus on ineffective coordination between local, regional and national authorities, in order to address: unclear divisions of competencies and responsibilities, a lack of administrative capacity, insufficient financing and use of market based instruments, a lack of policy integration and policy coherence, a lack of knowledge and data and insufficient compliance assurance mechanisms.

Importance

High
Medium
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European Parliament: Motion for Resolution - vote in Plenary

13-16/11 vote in EP Plenary; Co-sponsors Pietikäinen, Bonafè, Demesmaeker, Gerbrandy, Flanagan, Jávor

 
13 Nov
 

European Parliament: Motion for Resolution - vote in ENVI

31/08, ENVI vote on OQ and consideration of draft motion for resolution; 06/09 deadline for amendments in ENVI;
Co-sponsors Pietikäinen, Bonafè, Demesmaeker, Gerbrandy, Flanagan, Jávor

 
07 Sep
 

TAIEX EIR Peer to Peer Launch event at the CoR,

TAIEX EIR Peer to Peer Launch event at the CoR, co-organised between DG Environment and ENVE secretariat. Opening speech by the rapporteur.

 
07 Sep
 

Rapporteur speaks to Expert Group Greening the Semester & Environmental Implementation Review

Rapporteur speaks to Expert Group Greening the Semester & Environmental Implementation Review/09/2017:

 
06 Sep
 

Online survey of the CoR study on "Effective multi-level environmental governance for a better implementation of EU environment legislation"

Online survey of the CoR study on "Effective multi-level environmental governance for a better implementation of EU environment legislation"

 
01 Jun
 

13th ENVE meeting

Exchange of views with the participation of the Environment Commissioner Vella

 
24 Apr
 

Discussion with Environment Commissioner Vella at ENVE Commission meeting on the EIR

Discussion with Environment Commissioner Vella at ENVE Commission meeting on the EIR

 
24 Apr
 

Stakeholder consultation - Environmental Implementation Review (EIR)

Stakeholder consulation– Environmental Implementation Review (EIR)
Thursday 23 March 2017 between 14.30 and 16.30
in the Committee of the Regions building
(Rue Belliard 99-101, B-1040 Brussels)
Room JDE 70

 
23 Mar
 

ENV Council debate on EIR and greening the European Semester

Ministers welcomed the Commission's new Environmental Implementation Review as a useful tool to improve the implementation of EU environmental policy and legislation at national level and contribute to the greening of the European Semester. It was considered as a good opportunity for member states to cooperate among them and with the Commission to address common challenges and share best practices. Some of them underlined the need for national reports findings to be based on sound scientific data,
http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/meetings/env/2017/02/st06768_en17_pdf/

 
28 Feb
 

Meeting with European Commission

Meeting with European Commission

 
08 Feb
 

European Commission "EIR package" Communication and 28 country specific reports

The European Commission adopted on 3 February its first EIR package consisting of:

  • 28 country reports (as Staff Working Documents) which map national strengths, opportunities and weaknesses;
  • a Communication (COM(2017) 63 final) summarising the political conclusions of the country reports and examining common trends in key areas of EU environment policy;
  • and, as annex to the Communication, recommendations for improvements to all Member States.

 
03 Feb
 

European Commission Stakeholder Conference on Environmental Compliance Assurance - participation by the rapporteur

European Commission Stakeholder Conference on Environmental Compliance Assurance - participation by the rapporteur

 
31 Jan
 

ENVE Commission activity

As a follow-up to the seminar letters were sent to Commissioner Vella, ENVI Committee Chair Mr La Via, and the Maltese Environment Minister.

 
20 Oct
 

ENVE Commission activity

Event of CoR/EC Technical Platform for Cooperation on the Environment on the role of local and regional authorities in the new EC Environmental Implementation Review. With participation of Mr Cooper.

 
13 Sep
 

European Commission

EC adopts Communication on Delivering the benefits of EU environmental policies through a regular Environmental Implementation Review
COM(2016) 316 final

 
27 May