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How to keep Europeans healthy and safe in a changing climate?

European countries are facing increasing threats from climate change, including extreme weather events and infectious diseases. A new briefing by the Lancet Countdown and the European Environment Agency (EEA), published today on the European Climate and Health Observatory, draws attention to health impacts of climate change in the European Union (EU) and suggests key actions to address them.

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Europe's clean bathing waters – success in environmental policy and management

The share of bathing sites with excellent water quality in Europe has increased from 53 % in 1991 to 85 % in 2019, thanks to local actions guided by binding European legislation. A new European Environment Agency (EEA) report shows how improving bathing water quality can serve as a model for successful environmental legislation and management.

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Agricultural policy needs to secure stronger environmental improvements for water in Europe

Reducing pressures from agriculture is key to improving the status of Europe’s rivers, lakes, transitional, coastal waters and seas as well as groundwater bodies. A European Environment Agency (EEA) assessment, published today, shows that wider uptake of sustainable agricultural management practices is needed for improving the state of water, as well as biodiversity.

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Climate change adaptation is key to avoid disruption of EU agricultural commodities imports

Stepping up European Union (EU) support for international adaptation, together with trade diversification are key actions the EU can take to lessen the impacts of climate change on agricultural trade, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing published today.

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Many obsolete barriers harm Europe's rivers

River continuity is key to improving the ecological status of Europe’s water bodies. However, very few free-flowing rivers remain and the barriers in them cause significant pressures for about 20 % of Europe’s surface water bodies. A European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing, published today, looks at the issue of river barriers and their impact on ecosystems.

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Preventing chemical pollution requires a new approach for designing safe and sustainable products

The recent European Union chemicals strategy for sustainability aims to ensure that chemicals make a positive contribution to society without harming the environment and people’s health. A European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing, published today, describes key approaches to make chemicals and products safe and sustainable by design, before they enter the market.

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Schools across Europe share results of their air quality projects

More than 100 schools from 8 European countries participated in the citizen science CleanAir@School inititative, organised by the European European Agency (EEA) and the European Network of the Heads of Environmental Protection Agencies. The results of the initiative, published today, describe how schoolchildren measured pollution levels, learned about air quality and promoted actions for cleaner air.

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Advanced digital technologies can play a crucial role in making Europe’s waste management systems more circular and sustainable

Digital technologies like robotics, cloud computing and artificial intelligence will help improve the sustainability of Europe’s waste management systems. According to a European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing released today, increased use of these technologies can help deliver more effective waste management across Europe, improving logistics, recycling rates and enable better purchasing and sorting decisions by consumers.

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Plastics, a growing environmental and climate concern: how can Europe revert that trend?

The ever-increasing amount of plastic, its impact on biodiversity and contribution to climate change, and how to deal with it in a circular economy perspective have been on the European Union’s policy agenda for years. The COVID-19 pandemic has only increased the attention for plastic waste with images of masks in our seas, and large amounts of single-use protective gear. In the circular plastics economy report, published today, the European Environment Agency (EEA) analyses the need and potential for a shift to a circular and sustainable approach to our use of plastics.

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Latest EEA study finds multiple benefits of switch to renewable electricity

The increased use of renewable electricity across the European Union has not only reduced pressures linked to climate change, but also to air and water pollution (particulate matter formation, eutrophication and acidification), according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing published today. More targeted actions can help minimise the negative environmental effects of boosting renewable electricity supply.

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