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Sustainability transitions

Sustainability transitions

The environmental challenges ahead of us are global and systemic. Therefore, to achieve the EU’s long-term sustainability goals, the core systems of our societies will have to change dramatically. That is especially true for the systems related to food, energy, mobility and construction.

European cities have the potential to lead the way towards green, sustainable future, according to two assessments on urban environmental change, published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) today.

The annual Bathing Water report published today shows that in 2020, almost 83 % of Europe’s bathing water sites met the European Union’s most stringent ‘excellent’ water quality standards. The latest assessment (European bathing water quality in 2020), put together by the European Environment Agency (EEA) in cooperation with the European Commission, is based on the 2020 monitoring of 22 276 bathing sites across Europe. These cover the EU Member States, Albania and Switzerland throughout 2020.

The European Environment Agency’s (EEA) latest environmental performance data shows that the Agency’s work and operations in 2020 led to considerably lower impacts on the environment due mostly to restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Published: 14 Jun 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to influence Europe’s transition towards more environmentally sustainable urbanisation patterns for years to come. European cities have been at the forefront of the crisis from the very beginning, not only bearing the worst impacts but also becoming key actors in advocating for a green and just recovery. This briefing provides an initial overview of how the ongoing pandemic is reshaping urban life and discusses some of the key opportunities for achieving urban environmental sustainability in the aftermath of the crisis.

Published: 14 Jun 2021

It is becoming increasingly clear that the complex and interrelated challenges of climate change, environmental degradation and rising inequality will not be solved without a fundamental transformation of our societies. Far-reaching changes are needed to our technologies and infrastructures, cultures and lifestyles, as well as adaptations to the corresponding governance and institutional frameworks. Around the world, these important system innovations are converging in cities.

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