Has policy improved Europe's air quality?

In recent decades, the EU has introduced a range of policies to improve air quality by controlling pollutant emissions. A new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) evaluates three key instruments and finds that they have significantly improved Europe's air quality and reduced pollution-induced health effects. There is scope for even more progress, however, if countries achieve all their binding commitments to reduce emissions.

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Building stronger links for sharing environmental data

What we know about Europe’s environment comes from data collected by countless data providers. The Belgian Presidency of the European Union and the European Environment Agency (EEA) organised a conference to facilitate the sharing of environmental information.

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Deep emission cuts give the EU a head start under the Kyoto Protocol

A new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) shows that large drop in emissions seen in 2008 and 2009 gives EU-15 a head start to reach and even overachieve its 8 % reduction target under the Kyoto Protocol. Austria, Denmark and Italy, however, need to step up their current efforts until 2012 to ensure that their contribution to the common EU-15 target is delivered. The EEA report also shows that EU-27 is well on track towards achieving its 20 % reduction target by 2020.

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Biodiversity in Europe: policy scope must be widened for effective conservation

Europe is still far from meeting its 2010 target and we risk missing future targets unless we change the way we are managing our environment. The European Environment Agency’s new biodiversity report based on SEBI 2010 indicators assesses the state of biodiversity in Europe and makes recommendations for improving policy effectiveness.

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Europe's coasts: reconciling development and conservation

Europe’s coastal zones are under increasing pressure from erosion, pollution, climate change, urbanisation and tourism. Such pressures threaten entire ecosystems — vital not only for wildlife but also for the economy and human well-being. The European Environment Agency (EEA) takes a closer look at the state of coastal ecosystems and policy responses to the pressures affecting them.

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BISE and baseline: new tools to combat biodiversity loss in Europe

At the opening session of the Green Week conference in Brussels, the European Commission and the European Environment Agency (EEA) unveiled two new tools to combat biodiversity loss: BISE (the Biodiversity Information System for Europe) and 'Biodiversity baseline'. BISE is a web portal centralising information about European biodiversity in a single location. The baseline offers a comprehensive snapshot of the current state of biodiversity and will be used to monitor progress in the renewed efforts to halt biodiversity loss.

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Europe to exceed air pollutant emission limits – NOx in particular

In 2010, around half of the European Union's Member States expect to miss one or more of the legal limits set by the National Emission Ceilings Directive. According to recent data compiled by the European Environment Agency (EEA), 11 countries expect to exceed their ceilings by significant amounts — some missing NOx targets by more than 40 %.

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How can waste policy contribute to a resource-efficient economy?

Some countries are frontrunners on waste recycling and prevention; others could be inspired by these experiences. The European Environment Agency (EEA) and its European Topic Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production (ETC/SCP) have compiled a set of fact sheets presenting information on national strategies, targets and instruments for prevention and better management of waste.

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Everything about fresh water in Europe

Clean fresh water is essential to life. Unfortunately, almost all human activities affect water quality. On World Water Day, 22 March, the European Environment Agency (EEA) is enriching the information on the web-based Water Information System for Europe (WISE) with two new sets of data on urban waste water and pollutant releases.

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Better targeted agricultural spending could enhance biodiversity protection

Continuous change in agricultural land use directly affects Europe's biodiversity. A new report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) finds that Common Agricultural Policy payments could be used more effectively to support High Nature Value farmland and help halt biodiversity loss.

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EEA kicks off public activities in the run-up to COP15

On the occasion of Copenhagen Culture Night, the European Environment Agency (EEA) unveils today a webpage on its activities related to the international climate conference 'COP15'. The new webpage explains the EEA's role in the context of the international climate conference. It allows the public to explore the role of the EEA as leading European body providing authoritative information on the effects of climate change mitigation policies and the impacts of climate change.

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Effectiveness of EU cohesion spending on the environment

Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund are the European Union's main financial instruments to reduce the gap between poor and rich regions. In its new report, the European Environment Agency evaluates the effectiveness of these funds in achieving environmental goals by focusing on investments in wastewater treatment, biodiversity, and energy efficiency and renewable energy in three pilot countries: Austria, Italy and Spain.

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EEA awarded for its contribution to environment policy

The European Environment Agency yesterday received the WWF award for Conservation Merit 2009. The award is given in recognition of long-standing commitment to local, grassroots conservation. The Agency was presented the award in recognition of its consistent excellence in collecting, analysing, interpreting and communicating environmental data to improve decision making in Europe and globally.

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Cherishing the variety of life on our planet

Today, 22 May, is the International Day for Biological Diversity. To help policy-makers, civil society and the public tackle biodiversity loss, the European Environment Agency has placed biodiversity and ecosystems at the heart of its strategy and work programme for 2009–2013.

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Biodiversity loss and climate change: the need for an ecosystem approach

Biodiversity loss and climate change are now a part of our lives. Both are rooted in overexploitation of natural resources. Both require a coherent policy response. The Syracuse Charter and the Athens Conference underline the strong political commitment to take action. To ensure our society and economy have a healthy future, we need a way to assess our impacts on the natural world. The European Environment Agency's European Ecosystem Assessment (EURECA) responds to that need.

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Europe must grasp the true value of biodiversity

Europe clears forests, ploughs fields, drains wetlands and builds cities and roads, often at the expense of natural ecosystems. But how much does our current consumption and production affect the integrity of ecosystems? How much and how fast is the loss of biodiversity in Europe? The European Environment Agency (EEA) has provided some answers to these questions at a high-level conference organised this week by the European Commission.

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Europe’s first Green Capitals: Stockholm and Hamburg

Stockholm and Hamburg have been named as the European Green Capitals for 2010 and 2011, respectively, in recognition of their consistent records of high environmental standards and strong commitment to further improvement. The European Environment Agency took part in the evaluation panel and the final jury.

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Climate change conference opens in Poland

A step closer to a post-2012 deal on climate change is what is at stake as over 10 000 participants from governments, non-governmental organisations, and science and business communities gather for a two-week UN conference in Poznań, Poland. The European Environment Agency (EEA) is hosting a side event on 'Impacts of and adaptation to climate change in Europe' on 11 December 2008.

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EEA wins award for its environment friendly management

The European Environment Agency has won a national EMAS (Eco-management and audit scheme) award for its efforts in reducing energy consumption and increasing energy efficiency.

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Consumption patterns need to change to cope with growing cities

Urban areas are spreading, minimising the time and distances between and in-and-out of cities. The International Planning Congress in Dalian, China, addressed this ‘urban sprawl’ and sought ways to achieve sustainable urbanisation. The European Environment Agency contributed to this debate by urging policy makers to tackle underpinning consumption patterns.

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European Environment Agency (EEA)
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1050 Copenhagen K
Denmark
Phone: +45 3336 7100