Data and maps

Europe’s state of the environment 2020: change of direction urgently needed to face climate change challenges, reverse degradation and ensure future prosperity

Europe will not achieve its 2030 goals without urgent action during the next 10 years to address the alarming rate of biodiversity loss, increasing impacts of climate change and the overconsumption of natural resources. The European Environment Agency’s (EEA) latest ‘State of the Environment’ report published today states that Europe faces environmental challenges of unprecedented scale and urgency. The report says, however, there is reason for hope, amid increased public awareness of the need to shift to a sustainable future, technological innovations, growing community initiatives and stepped up EU action like the European Green Deal.

Read more

Total number of existing and planned policies and measures reported in the EU-28 (left) and by country (right)

Total number of existing and planned policies and measures reported by countries in 2015, 2017, 2019

Read more

How is Europe fighting against climate change?

To prevent the worst impacts of climate change, European countries have developed national strategies, policies and accompanying measures to mitigate climate change. These include for example targets for greenhouse gas emissions in key sectors of the economy, promoting the use of renewable energy and low carbon fuels or efficiency improvements of buildings.

Read more

EU Member States add more climate policies, better evidence on costs and effectiveness needed

The European Union (EU) Member States reported more than 400 new climate change mitigation policies between 2017 and 2019, according to data released today by the European Environment Agency (EEA). EU Member States have now reported more than 1 900 climate actions, most of them targeting energy supply or energy consumption.

Read more

Climate change: Significant drop in EU emissions in 2018 but further effort needed to reach 2030 target

The European Union (EU) cut its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2 % in 2018, according to preliminary estimates released today by the European Environment Agency. However, rising energy consumption continues to hamper progress on the share of energy generated by renewable sources and on energy efficiency. As in previous years, the transport sector remains a particular concern with rising GHG emissions, low uptake of renewable energy sources and insufficient reductions of transport fuels’ life-cycle emissions.

Read more

Reuse and recycling are key to tackling Europe’s waste problem and to foster a more circular economy

Improved circular and climate-friendly business models and policies to boost reuse and recycling, plus improved consumer awareness will help the European Union tackle the growing problem posed by plastic, battery, electronic and textile waste, according to two European Environment Agency (EEA) briefings published today.

Read more

New challenges facing Europe’s waste water treatment plants present opportunities for improving sustainability

More investment is needed to make urban waste water treatment plants fit to meet the difficult challenges posed by the impacts of climate change, as well as the presence of antibiotics and other micro-pollutants in waste water, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing published today.

Read more

Europe's circular economy still in its infancy

Circular material use can minimise waste and resource extraction, improve resource efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and contribute to conserving biodiversity. However, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) report, published today, circular economy initiatives in Europe are still at an early stage and would benefit from more investments in upscaling promising innovations and in monitoring progress towards circularity.

Read more

Gap between real-world and type-approval emissions undermines incentives for cleaner cars

Incentives to promote fuel-efficient cars have not always resulted in expected emission reductions, due to the growing gap between real-world and type approval emissions. However, according to a new European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing, incentives that boost the uptake of electric vehicles considerably reduce greenhouse gas and air pollutant emissions.

Read more

EU on track to end use of chemicals harming the ozone layer

The European Union (EU) has achieved its goals to phase out ozone-depleting substances under the Montreal Protocol. A new European Environment Agency (EEA) report shows that in 2018 the EU again destroyed or exported more ozone-depleting substances than it produced or imported.

Read more

Climate change adaptation is key to future of farming in Europe

This past summer’s heatwaves and extreme weather events have broken new climate records in Europe once again reinforcing the importance of climate change adaptation. We sat down with Blaz Kurnik, a European Environment Agency (EEA) expert on climate change impacts and adaptation to discuss the EEA’s new report on how climate change is impacting agriculture in Europe which came out earlier this month.

Read more

Making sustainability happen: new European policies offer a unique opportunity

Ursula von der Leyen, president-elect of the European Commission, set her team’s political priorities for the next five years. A European Green Deal, outlining more ambitious action on climate and biodiversity crises, is at the heart of her agenda. European policies have long tackled environmental degradation and climate change with some success and some failures. Supported by growing calls for action by the public, this new policy term — with the new European Commission and Parliament — provides a unique opportunity to scale up and speed up a green and just transition for Europe.

Read more

Sustainability transitions: policy and practice

This report aims to go beyond theoretical discussions to explore the practical implications of transitions research for policy and practice, building on the insights from past assessments. It highlights the growing links to established EU policy frameworks and identifies how transitions thinking is being operationalised at different scales across Europe. Co-authored by leading experts in transitions studies, the report has also benefited strongly from interactions with EEA partners in multiple policy areas, in particular, at a workshop co-hosted with the European Commission's European Political Strategy Centre in July 2018.

Read more

How to accelerate change towards sustainability?

There is growing recognition that achieving prosperity within environmental limits requires fundamental changes in core systems of production and consumption. A new European Environment Agency (EEA) report, published today, identifies ten focus areas for enabling sustainability transitions.

Read more

Knowledge for a sustainable Europe | A snapshot from the European Environment Agency

This briefing is based on a range of EEA and Eionet work, and is intended to provide parliamentarians and the European Commission with a selection of key insights on the challenges for environmental sustainability.

Read more



Document Actions