Mayors urge EU to aim for net-zero emissions by 2050
The mayors of ten major European cities -including Paris, London, Milan and Barcelona - have issued a joint call for the EU to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement.
UK vows to play hard-ball with EU over fishing waters
The UK outlined plans to overhaul its fishing policy on Wednesday, insisting that it would decide unilaterally how much access to give to EU boats after it leaves the bloc next March.
China dwarfs Europe on EV investments, figures show
European carmakers have invested seven times more in electric vehicle production lines in China than at home, according to industry figures collected by Transport & Environment (T&E), a green campaign group.
EU aims to increase 2030 carbon reduction target to 45%
The European Union (EU) looks likely to increase its 2030 carbon reduction target by 5% following months of discussions amongst negotiators.
EU raises 2030 renewable energy target, outlines palm oil phase out
Negotiators from the European Parliament and Member States have this morning (June 14) struck a deal to raise the target for the proportion of energy it will source from renewables by 2030 to 32%, up from the previous 27% goal.
G7 countries pour $100bn a year into oil, gas and coal: study
Each year, at least $100bn goes to support the production and consumption of oil, gas and coal, according to a major new study published on Monday (4 June). That is despite a promise from all G7 and G20 members to stop subsidising fossil fuels by 2025.
European Commission plots ban on single-use plastics
The European Commission presented its long-awaited marine-litter-busting proposal on single-use plastics on Monday (28 May). The first legislative proposal from the Plastics Strategy aims to help the EU clean up the continent's beaches and waterways.
EU tables ground-breaking 'low-carbon benchmark' for green finance
The European Commission presented on Thursday (24 May) a set of proposals aimed at boosting private investment in low-carbon technologies like renewable energies while increasing transparency in sustainable finance to avoid green-washing.
EU proposes 25% 'climate quota' in new long-term budget
The clean energy transition and other initiatives to decarbonise Europe's economy will represent 25% of EU spending under a seven-year EU budget plan put forward by the European Commission on Wednesday (2 May).
European Union agrees to ban on bee-harming insecticides
The European Union has announced a ban on three widely-used insecticides due to the threat that they pose to bees, although some green groups are calling for further bans on other chemicals.
Report: EU carbon prices could hit €55 by 2030
EU carbon prices could quadruple to €55 a tonne by 2030 if policymakers align the bloc's emissions targets with the Paris Agreement.
Investors and energy giants call for close UK EU climate ties after Brexit
Aviva, E.ON, RWE, EDF and NPower are among a coalition of 21 energy giants and top investors who have called on Britain and the EU to maintain close links on energy and climate policy after the UK leaves the bloc.
European Union unveils green investment action plan
The European Commission unveiled on Thursday (8 March) its highly expected action plan on sustainable finance, aiming to clarify what can be labelled as "green" investment and potentially lowering capital requirements on asset holders.
Business benefits of EU ETS reform clouded by Brexit uncertainty
EXCLUSIVE: Last week's vote in favour to reform the EU's carbon market is a "strong signal" that energy-intensive businesses should accelerate decarbonisation processes, although the European Parliament's rapporteur on the reform has warned that Brexit will act as high-profile distraction.
Expert group recommends setting up European standards for 'green bonds'
An EU sustainability taxonomy, a definition of priority investment areas, the clarification of investor duties and development of "official" European sustainability standards for green bonds are some of the recommendations experts made to the European Commission on Wednesday (31 January).
EU maps out plastics vision in new strategy
The European Commission presented on Tuesday (16 January) its eagerly anticipated strategy on how the EU intends to approach plastic production and pollution over the next decade and beyond.
Plastic tax and ETS tinkering could plug Brexit hole, suggests EU budget chief
EU Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger has revealed that the European Commission will propose taxing plastic and shifting emissions trading income to EU level, in an attempt to balance the bloc's coffers once the United Kingdom leaves the EU.
Brexit bill may have broken international environment law, says UN
The British government may have breached a major "environmental democracy" law by failing to consult the public when drawing up Brexit legislation.
Long-term policies can help business capture €324bn circular economy opportunity
A new report has called on European Union (EU) institutions to promote resource efficiency beyond the completion of the Circular Economy Package, by learning from best practice scenarios that could add €324bn to the EU's economy by 2030.
EU announces €9bn in funding for climate action
The European commission has announced funding of €9bn (£8bn) for action on climate change, one of a flurry of measures from governments, businesses and investors aimed at achieving the goals of the 2015 Paris agreement.
Brands back MEP calls for global ban on animal testing in cosmetics
The announcement that European Parliament will discuss the options for a global ban on animal testing in cosmetics has been welcomed by a host brands, including The Body Shop, which want an international convention on the global ban to be created.
MEPs vote for stronger EU efficiency and renewable energy targets
MEPs voted on Tuesday (28 November) in favour of increasing efficiency and renewable energy targets, in a decisive morning for EU energy and climate policy that provoked both jubilation and disappointment.
Climate finance, the sticking point in COP23
Rich countries had pledged to raise $100 billion each year in climate finance for developing countries by 2020. As of September 2017, they had pledged just $10.3 billion. And the question of who should pay remains unanswered.
EU and California to discuss linking carbon markets
The EU and California are beginning talks to potentially create a common carbon market that could also include China.
Can green mortgages help the European Union reach climate and building targets?
New reports provided by the World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) have outlined how an "energy-efficient mortgage" could provide the ideal financial instrument to improve the energy performance of Europe's existing housing stock.
European Commission moves to Brexit-proof Emissions Trading System
The European Commission has agreed on a new measure to protect its Emissions Trading System (ETS) against a potential breakdown in Brexit negotiations.
EU Commission taken to court over new emissions tests for vehicles
Environmental group ClientEarth has taken legal action against the European Commission's new rules for car emissions tests, which will allow manufacturers to keep their emissions control systems secret and, according to the group, cause another Dieselgate-type scandal.
EU rules out tax on plastic products to reduce waste
The EU has ruled out penalties on single-use plastic products, in favour of raising public awareness of the damage consumer plastics are doing to the world's oceans.
MEPs urge EU to ratchet up climate ambitions ahead of UN summits
The European Parliament on Wednesday (3 October) backed a resolution that calls on the EU to increase its 2030 climate targets and to come up with a mid-century zero-emissions strategy before an all-important UN summit in 2018.
Transport sucks up nearly half of Europe's fossil fuel subsidies, report finds
European countries spend more than €112 billion per year subsidising oil, gas and coal production or consumption - including tax breaks on highly-polluting diesel - despite a pledge to phase out fossil fuels completely by 2020.
EU to aim for 100% emission cuts in new 'mid-century roadmap'
The European Commission is preparing an update of its low-carbon economy roadmap for 2050, acknowledging that the bloc's current target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions at least 80% by mid-century are insufficient, edie's content partner EurActiv.com has learned.
MEPs agree to bolster EU's renewable energy target for 2030
The European Parliament's energy committee confirmed that MEPs want renewable energy targets to be more ambitious than the proposal put forward by the Commission.
EU to enforce new energy efficiency rules for vacuum cleaners
New EU rules on vacuum cleaners come into force next month, as Brussels looks to improve energy efficiency and cut carbon emissions.
New industrial air pollution ruling puts EU coal plants on 'life support'
Large industrial plants have been given a four-year timeframe to adhere to new standards on air pollutants across the European Union (EU), a decision that places "the immediate future of coal plants into doubt", according to environmental lawyers ClientEarth.
'Investor-ready' green certification project rolled-out for district energy and street lighting
A green certification project aimed at standardising how building projects are measured and developed to accelerate investment opportunities has received backing from the Horizon 2020 programme to expand across Europe.
New energy labels for appliances seen as boon for consumers
The European Parliament approved on Tuesday (June 13) the introduction of new energy labels for household appliances, which MEPs and industry experts said should enable consumers to save money and cut energy consumption while helping the bloc reduce overall carbon emissions.
New data hub offers financial oasis against climate-related hazards
A new global data community aimed at expanding the climate risk adaption strategies for the insurance and investment markets has launched this week (5 June), to protect economic losses incurred through damages to infrastructure during natural disasters.
Middle-management 'disconnected' from Sustainable Development Goals, report finds
A "strong appetite" to address the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is being hindered by a lack of engagement and understanding in mid-management and employees, a new report described as the "wake-up call to the importance of working together" found.
European Union enforces new air pollution limits
The European Union (EU) has today (29 April) approved new air pollution limits, which could save more than 20,000 lives each year by reducing pollution derived from coal-fired power plants.
Vast majority of EU countries set to miss Paris Agreement goals, research finds
Only three European countries are on course to achieve the Paris Agreement targets, according to research which ranks the UK in fifth position on its progress towards the landmark climate treaty.
Leaked paper exposes EU countries' abuse of climate loophole
European Union countries exploited loopholes in United Nations forestry rules to pocket carbon credits worth €600 million and the equivalent of global-warming emissions from 114 million cars.
Circular Economy Package: Everything you need to know
In light of the European Parliament's decision to reinforce more ambitious recycling targets within the long-awaited Circular Economy Package, edie takes a detailed look at how the proposed measures could affect businesses, especially in light of the UK's imminent departure from the European Union (EU).
Circular Economy Package: MEPs pledge to restore recycling targets in landmark vote
The European Parliament has voted to restore recycling and landfill targets that had been lowered by the European Commission in its re-tabled Circular Economy Package.
Member states move to weaken EU energy efficiency targets
European Union (EU) member states have moved to weaken the bloc's 2030 energy efficiency goals, setting up tough negotiations with the European Parliament, which backs stronger legislation.
EU sees 'strategic advantage' of biofuels in aviation
In sectors like aviation where decarbonisation options are limited, there is a strategic advantage in encouraging the use of biofuels, a European Commission official has said.
Reform of EU carbon trading scheme agreed
An overhaul of the EU's flagship trading scheme for cutting carbon emissions by European industries has been approved by the member states.
Report: EU nations struggling to foster smart city transition
The majority of European Union (EU) members are showing "little progress" in developing smart built environment policies that encourage the uptake of energy storage or demand response initiatives, a new report has found.
European Parliament adopts draft reform of carbon market
The European Parliament on Wednesday (15 February) adopted draft reforms of the EU's carbon market post-2020 that aim to balance greater cuts in greenhouse gases with protection for energy-intensive industries.
European Commission issues 'final warning' to UK over air pollution breaches
The European Commission has sent a "final warning" to the UK for failing to address repeated breaches of legal air pollution limits in 16 areas including London, Birmingham, Leeds, and Glasgow.
UK must play 'careful game' to balance green policy and new trade deals
EXCLUSIVE: In its pursuit of new trade deals post-Brexit, the UK must be careful that product and resource standards don't handicap businesses from exporting back into Europe, the chair of the EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee has warned.
Report: Enforcement mechanisms 'critical' for post-Brexit environmental prosperity
Introducing and transposing key environmental legislation that enforces political stability once the UK leaves the European Union (EU) will be "critical" to ensuring investor confidence, a new report from a House of Lords Committee has claimed.
Almost 90% of new power in Europe from renewable sources in 2016
Renewable energy sources made up nearly nine-tenths of new power added to Europe's electricity grids last year, in a sign of the continent's rapid shift away from fossil fuels.
23 EU countries are breaking European air quality laws
European air quality laws are being flaunted in more than 130 cities across 23 of the 28 EU member states, the European Commission said yesterday (6 February).
UK 'falling behind' on EU renewable energy targets
The European Union (EU) is on track to hit a 20% renewable goal for 2020, despite nations such as the UK, Ireland and Luxembourg struggling to increase the share of renewables in transport and heat sectors, a new European Commission (EC) report has found.
MEPs bolster EU recycling and landfill targets
Members of the European Parliament's Environment Committee yesterday (24 January) moved to increase draft EU recycling and landfill targets that had been lowered by the European Commission in its re-tabled Circular Economy Package.
EU risks missing climate goals without 'sustainable' biofuels, experts warn
The European Commission's proposal to gradually phase out "sustainable" first generation biofuels will prevent the EU from meeting its 2030 climate goals, experts claim.
Europe urged to cut all transport emissions to keep climate pledge
Germany's Öko-Institut warned the EU must cut global warming transport emissions by 94% by 2050 to stop the planet's temperature rising above the two degree limit agreed by world leaders at the Paris climate summit in December 2015.
Europe eyes 'big bang' in power savings from industry and SMEs
While standards for toasters, fridges, and TV sets have so far grabbed the most attention, the biggest potential for power savings actually lies in integrating industries and small businesses to the electricity system, a senior EU official has said.
UK agrees to new EU air pollution laws, raising 'awkward' Brexit questions
The UK has agreed to adopt new European Union (EU) legislation on air quality, which sets stricter national limits for the emission of some of the most dangerous air pollutants.
EU decides against tinkering with flagship nature directives
After undergoing a much-criticised European Commission-helmed 'fitness check', the EU's main nature directives have been ruled fit for purpose and will not be rewritten or weakened, in a huge win for environmentalists.
Dieselgate: EC begins legal action against UK and other EU nations
The European commission has started legal action against the UK and six other EU states for failing to act against car emissions cheating in the wake of the "dieselgate" scandal.
European Union 2020 energy targets 'well within reach'
European Union (EU) Member States are collectively on course to meet 2020 targets for renewables, energy efficiency and emissions reductions, although a new report has warned that long-term objectives are at risk of falling short.
EU winter package met with mixed green business reception
As the European Commission (EC) today (30 November) unveils its energy winter package aimed at helping to reduce carbon emissions by 40% by 2030, edie analyses the major talking points of the document's key proposals.
European businesses fear 'lost decade' for renewables ahead of EU proposals
As the European Commission (EC) prepares to present its energy package for 2030 on Wednesday (30 November), a coalition of multinational businesses including BT, Philips Lighting and Kingfisher has called for more ambitious energy legislation to replace the current renewables directive.
Leaked biofuel plan set to increase European transport emissions
A leaked draft of the European Commission's (EC) Renewable Energy Directive (RED) has revealed that a promised phase-out of food-based biodiesels will not be met, with new proposals set to increase European transport emissions by 219 million tonnes by 2030.
Private sector pushes for better EU renewable energy legislation
After leaked documents revealing renewable energy will no longer be a top priority in the EU's new winter package, major corporations including Google, Unilever and IKEA have backed a call for improvements to the forthcoming package.
Leaked EU energy package subsidises fossil fuels, undermines renewables
The EU claims to be promoting an ambitious agenda at the Marrakesh climate conference, but its latest piece of energy legislation could subsidise new coal capacity and undermine market access for renewables.
Petrol cars allowed to exceed pollution limits by 50% under draft EU laws
New European cars with petrol engines will be allowed to overshoot a limit on toxic particulates emissions by 50% under a draft EU regulation backed by the UK and most other EU states.
'Way behind the curve': EU climate policy 'obstructed' by trade body BusinessEurope
Trade association BusinessEurope's "strong opposition" to more ambitious European Union (EU) climate legislation represents a "clear detachment" from the position of the European business community, according to a new report from UK research group InfluenceMap.
EU fast-tracks deal to ratify Paris Agreement
The Paris Agreement is close to entering into force, after European Union (EU) Ministers approved to fast-track the ratification process at an Environment Council extraordinary meeting in Brussels today (30 September).
Surge in electric cars could strain energy grid, warns EU agency
The large scale roll-out of electric cars on EU roads will help fight climate change but more electricity will have to be generated to power the vehicles which, the European Environment Agency (EEA) has warned, could have its own impact on global warming.
Research predicts European wind rush by 2025
New research has anticipated that more than 140GW of new wind power capacity will be deployed in Europe by 2025 despite deep regulatory reform, in the same week that Wind Europe called on the European Union (EU) to ramp up political commitments to make the continent the best choice for renewables investment.
Germany wants to scrap EU recycling targets
Germany, the EU's most influential country and its leading recycler, has called for recycling targets in the European Commission's Circular Economy package of green laws to be scrapped.
European Commission funds WRAP's £2.7m London-wide food waste reduction plan
WRAP has launched a new London-wide behaviour change initiative that aims to prevent food waste in the capital as well as promoting best practice measures for recycling unavoidable food waste.
European Commission urged to revamp bioenergy and shipping policies
The European Commission has been greeted with across-the-board support from MEPs to include emissions from shipping in the European Union's 2030 emissions reduction target, while non-profits are also calling for improved bioenergy policies.
MEPs shocked by 'secretive' ICAO plan to cut aviation emissions
A six-year delay, exemptions for poor nations, and a gradual phase-in system for participating countries are all being considered as part of talks to curb aviation pollution at the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), MEPs discovered at a hearing in Parliament today (1 September).
UK plays leading role as European Union hits energy efficiency target six years early
A 15% reduction in energy consumption in the UK has spearheaded a continental movement which has seen the European Union (EU) surpass a key energy efficiency target six years early, a new report has revealed.
Treasury to underwrite Horizon 2020 projects beyond EU membership
The UK's innovation agency has vowed to ensure that science and research plays a "central role in a progressive industrial strategy", after Chancellor Philip Hammond revealed that the Treasury will underwrite business and academic funding for approved Horizon 2020 projects.
Vehicle emissions standard forms 'centrepiece' of EU's low-carbon vision
A new legislative proposal from the European Union (EU) that creates binding targets for Member States to reduce emissions in the transport, buildings, agriculture, waste, land-use and forestry sectors will hinge on the ability to accelerate low-carbon technology and fuels in the automotive industry.
EU Member States offered climate target flexibility in bid to cut emissions
EU member states will be able to bank annual emissions savings from sectors such as agriculture and transport, and use them in later years to meet their climate targets, under EU legislation set to be put forward today (20 July).
European Commission set to establish post-2020 transport efficiency standards
Plans outlined in a leaked draft document from the European Commission (EC) to introduce efficiency standards for new cars, vans and trucks by the mid-2020s has been lauded as a "step in the right direction" by Transport & Environment (T&E).
Brexit will force EU countries 'to make deeper, costlier carbon cuts'
Brexit will force the European Union's remaining 27 countries to spend billions of Euros on cutting carbon emissions deeper to compensate for the UK leaving, according to experts.
Aviation industry preparing for 'eleventh hour' deal on emission trading
An agreement on curbing emissions from international flights will be reached at the ICAO general assembly this autumn, according to industry sources, while biofuels continue to struggle to emerge as a long-term solution for greening the sector.
Leaked TTIP energy proposal could 'sabotage' EU climate policy
The latest draft version of the TTIP agreement could sabotage European efforts to save energy and switch to clean power, according to MEPs.
Beyond borders: 10 amazing European sustainability success stories
With the UK nervously awaiting the results of a defining European Union (EU) referendum, edie has rounded up some of the ways other Member States have been rolling out their own ambitious green initiatives to drive the low-carbon transition outside of the collaborative clutches of the EU.
UN boss: Brexit would mean rewriting Paris Agreement on climate change
A vote for Brexit in tomorrow's UK referendum on EU membership (23 June) would mean that the COP21 agreement would have to be rewritten, the executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change said on Wednesday (22 June) in Brussels.
European Commission warned of car emissions test cheating, five years before VW scandal
The European commission was warned by its own experts that a car maker was suspected of cheating emissions tests five years before the VW emissions scandal.
Bloomberg Taskforce and European Commission form new climate change alliance
Michael Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, will be in the driving seat of a new global alliance of cities to tackle climate change, despite the EU having pioneered the idea of coordinating mayors to fight global warming.
"The EU is doing its homework": Commission makes landmark proposal to ratify Paris Agreement
The European Commission has today (10 June) presented its plans for the European Union (EU) to ratify the historic Paris Agreement, calling for a swift process of enshrining the global climate deal into European law.
Brexit would free UK from 'spirit-crushing' green directives, says minister
The UK could develop a more flexible approach to environmental protection free of "spirit-crushing" Brussels directives if it votes to leave the EU, the farming minister, George Eustice, has said.
Biodieselgate? British industry leads EU on elimination of palm oil biofuels, says REA
The Renewable Energy Association (REA) has revealed that UK importation and consumption of palm oil-based biodiesel for use as a feedstock for vehicles still stands at 'zero' for 2015/16, in light of new data which shows that cars and trucks were responsible for almost half of all of the palm oil used across Europe in 2014.
Will the Pact of Amsterdam strengthen the UK's air quality regulations?
With Britain's crucial European Union (EU) referendum just weeks away, a major new EU-wide initiative has been launched to introduce more ambitious measures to improve air quality and implement closed-loop business processes, in an effort to create smarter, greener cities within EU Member States.
Global brands urge EC President to propose heavy-goods efficiency standards
Global brands such as IKEA, Nestlé and Philips have urged the President of the European Commission (EC) to propose post-2020 CO2 reductions for heavy-goods vehicles in Europe, raising issues over the impact that European transport legislation would have on the UK if the country were to leave the European Union (EU).
Green transport target will be scrapped post-2020, EU confirms
EU laws requiring member states to use "at least 10%" renewable energy in transport will be scrapped after 2020, the European Commission confirmed, hoping to set aside a protracted controversy surrounding the environmental damage caused by biofuels.
'Breakthrough' CCS technology paves way for sustainable construction industry
A technological innovation that will enable Europe's cement and lime industries to significantly reduce their environmental footprint through carbon capture and storage (CCS) has received €12m backing from the European Union.
Commission draws fire over support for British fossil fuel subsidies
New European Commission research has highlighted failings in the different state subsidies offered to electricity utilities across the EU, while giving qualified support to the 'market-based' model used in the United Kingdom.
UN launches campaign to enlist women in boardrooms to take up climate issue
Women working in financial services are opening a new front in the battle against climate change, with the launch of a UN-backed initiative to take global warming concerns into business boardrooms.
EU pushed towards 'climate disclosure' regime for investors
Pressure is building on global regulators and the European Commission to "stress-test" portfolios of large institutional investors against long-term objectives to reduce climate change, in a move that could shift billions in investment away from fossil fuels.
EU vows tough enforcement of circular economy package
The circular economy package of waste and recycling laws will be backed by tougher European Commission enforcement than seen under previous administrations, an official yesterday (5 April) told plastic industry delegates.
Climate change off the table at next week's EU summit
European Union leaders are unlikely to discuss how the bloc will build on the Paris agreement to cap global warming at their summit next week, it has emerged.