Assessment of cost recovery through pricing of water

The main objective of this study is to provide practical knowledge on the current status of the implementation of key principles of Article 9 of the Water Framework Directive (WFD), and in particular on the cost‑recovery principle.

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Towards a green economy in Europe - EU environmental policy targets and objectives 2010…-2050

The 'green economy' has emerged as a priority in policy debate in recent years. But what does the concept mean in practice and how can decision-makers measure progress towards this strategic goal? This report provides some answers, presenting a detailed overview of the key objectives and targets in EU environmental policy and legislation for the period 2010…2050. It focuses on selected environmental and resource policy areas, specifically: energy; greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and ozone-depleting substances; air quality and air pollution; transport sector emissions of greenhouse gases and air pollutants; waste; water; sustainable consumption and production (SCP); chemicals; biodiversity and land use.

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EU bioenergy potential from a resource efficiency perspective

The main objective of this report is to review the implications of resource efficiency principles for developing EU bioenergy production. The results presented are primarily based on the 2013 ETC/SIA study, capturing key messages while excluding some of the more technical elements. The report aims to be a more accessible version of the ETC/SIA study, aimed at the non-technical reader.

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Managing municipal solid waste - a review of achievements in 32 European countries

Improved waste management is an essential element in efforts to make Europe more resource efficient. One key means of achieving that is by shifting waste management up the waste hierarchy. In recent years these important goals have been integrated into European environmental policy. But national efforts to shift up the waste hierarchy have been under way for longer. Together, these instruments establish a range of waste management targets and broader goals for the years to 2020.

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Environmental pressures from European consumption and production

A study in integrated environmental and economic analysis - This report, prepared within the broad framework of EEA work on environmental accounts, presents and describes the tool of environmentally extended input-output analysis and illustrates its potential uses. The report aims to: present the tool of environmentally extended input-output analysis of EE-IOT and assess its potential for answering key SCP policy questions; make use of the tool and the latest data available in Europe to identify the environmental 'hotspots' and leverage points in European consumption and production; and identify weaknesses and potential for improvement in the current application of the tool.

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Movements of waste across the EU's internal and external borders

This report presents movements of hazardous and certain non-hazardous wastes across borders between EU countries and to and from countries outside the EU. It analyses patterns of waste exports and imports and the driving forces behind them.

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Consumption and the environment — 2012 update

Update to the European Environment State and Outlook 2010 (SOER 2010) thematic assessment

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Material resources and waste — 2012 update

Update to the European Environment State and Outlook 2010 (SOER 2010) thematic assessment

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EEA Signals 2012 – Building the future we want

Signals 2012 brings together environmental issues such as sustainability, green economy, water, waste, food, governance and knowledge sharing. It is prepared in the context of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development — Rio 2012. This year's Signals will give you a flavour of how consumers, forward-thinking businesses and policymakers can make a difference by combining new technological tools — from satellite observations to online platforms. It will also suggest creative and effective solutions to preserve the environment.

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Environmental indicator report 2012

Reliable, relevant, targeted and timely environmental information is an essential element in implementing environmental policy and management processes. Such information can come in many formats — with indicators being a long-established approach to distilling detailed information into trends that are robust and easily understandable by a broad audience.

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Environmental tax reform in Europe: opportunities for eco-innovation

Environmental policy instruments are frequently characterised as obstacles to economic activity but environmental taxes can, in fact, be the opposite — serving as catalysts for the creativity that underpins thriving economies.

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Environmental tax reform in Europe: implications for income distribution

Although environmental tax reforms (ETR) tend to improve incomes across society, they can have mild regressive impacts in that richer households gain more than poorer ones. Care is needed to design ETRs in ways that ensure that certain groups are able to benefit equally. ETR's overall benefits for the economy, environment and society are potentially significant. ETR should therefore be regarded as a key element in the policymaking toolkit for shifting to a green economy.

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Earnings, jobs and innovation: the role of recycling in a green economy

This short report explains the role of recycling in the green economy and examines the evidence of its contribution in Europe, focusing primarily on the economic benefits that recycling offers.

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An experimental framework for ecosystem capital accounting in Europe

This report presents an overall experimental framework for ecosystem capital accounting. It is based on the to implement simplified ecosystem capital accounts for Europe as a 'fast-track' initiative launched by the European Environment Agency in 2010. The experimental framework highlights accounting balances and relationships between accounting tables and systems as well as key indicators and aggregates that describe economy ecosystem interactions. Ecosystem accounts are being developed as part of the System of Environmental-Economic Accounts which aims at supplementing the UN System of National Accounts with information on the environment and natural capital.

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Resource efficiency in Europe — Policies and approaches in 31 EEA member and cooperating countries

This report provides an overview of resource efficiency policies and instruments in 31 member and cooperating countries of the EEA’s Eionet network. A detailed survey was conducted during the first half of 2011 to collect, analyse and disseminate information about national experiences in developing and implementing resource efficiency policies, with the goal to facilitate the sharing of experiences and good practice. The report reviews national approaches to resource efficiency and explores similarities and differences in policies, strategies, indicators and targets, policy drivers and institutional setup. It concludes with some EEA considerations for development of future policies on resource efficiency at the EU and country levels. The analysis is illustrated with short examples of policy initiatives in the countries, described in more detail in the country profiles published together with the report.

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Europe's environment — An Assessment of Assessments

In support of the 2011 'Environment for Europe' Ministerial Conference in Astana, EEA has prepared Europe's environment — An Assessment of Assessments (EE-AoA). This report provides a comprehensive overview of available sources of environmental information across the region which directly relate to the themes in focus at the Conference, water and related ecosystems, and green economy.

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Waste opportunities — Past and future climate benefits from better municipal waste management in Europe

Using a life-cycle perspective, this report analyses the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) from municipal solid waste management in the EU, plus Norway and Switzerland. Three scenarios illustrate how waste management and associated GHG emissions might develop until 2020.

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Mapping the impacts of natural hazards and technological accidents in Europe

The report assesses the occurrence and impacts of disasters and the underlying hazards such as storms, extreme temperature events, forest fires, water scarcity and droughts, floods, snow avalanches, landslides, earthquakes, volcanoes and technological accidents in Europe for the period 1998-2009.

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Consumption and the environment - SOER 2010 thematic assessment

The consumption of goods and services in EEA member countries is a major driver of global resource use and associated environmental impacts. Growth in global trade is resulting in an increasing share of environmental pressures and impacts from European consumption taking place beyond Europe. Food and drink, housing, mobility and tourism are responsible for a large part of the pressures and impacts caused by consumption in the EU. Achieving significant reductions in environmental pressures and impacts will require changing private and public consumption patterns, to supplement gains achieved through better technology and improved production processes.

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Material resources and waste — SOER 2010 thematic assessment

The European economy needs huge amounts of resources to function. Apart from consuming minerals, metals, concrete and wood, Europe burns fossil fuels and uses land to satisfy the needs of its citizens. Demand for materials is so intense that between 20 and 30 % of the resources we use are now imported. At the other end of the materials chain, the EU economy generates around six tons of waste per person every year. With the boom in international trade, EU consumption and production may potentially damage ecosystems and human health not only within but also far beyond its borders.

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European Environment Agency (EEA)
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