Environment Council a mixed bag on environment and climate

Posted on 23 June 2020

At today's EU Environment Council meeting, ministers showed a mixed response in regard to environment and climate initiatives.
On the one hand, the call for the ‘do no harm’ principle to be applied to all elements of the recovery package was a common thread among Member States along with broad support for the EU Biodiversity Strategy as a central element of the post COVID-19 recovery process. However, Member States fell below the mark when it came to the Climate Law. 

“Environment ministers voiced their broad support for the need to step-up action to protect and restore Europe’s nature through the EU 2030 Biodiversity Strategy. This overall support must become a concrete endorsement in October when ministers will adopt conclusions on the strategy.” said Andreas Baumüller, Head of Natural Resources at WWF European Policy Office. “Environment ministers have some lobbying of their own to do to convince the Heads of States to ensure at least €20 billion per year will be mobilised for the implementation of the 2030 Biodiversity Strategy. Several ministers were clear on this - it’s an investment that not only benefits nature, but our society as a whole.”

Imke Lübbeke, Head of Climate & Energy, WWF European Policy Office Senior Policy Officer said
“We’re staring down the barrel of another heatwave in much of Europe, and yet when it comes to stopping runaway climate change, EU ministers are happy to sit on their hands. While seven Member States* called for the EU to increase its 2030 emissions reduction target from 40% to 55%,this is way off the 65% that science demands, and the majority were shamefully silent. What’s more, other crucial features that are needed  in the climate law, like an independent expert advisory body, weren’t even mentioned.”

*These were Finland, Austria, Luxembourg, Latvia, Denmark, Estonia and Sweden

For further information:
Sarah Azau
Media & Communications Manager
+32 473 57 31 37

Edel Shanahan
Communications Officer for Biodiversity & Agriculture
+ 32 484 49 35 15
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