Europe_green_lightWhat environmental questions will be considered in Europe over the coming months? Will the Spanish Presidency of the European Union Councilinclude a solid sustainable perspective in its work programme? The coming six months are crammed with activities and meetings. Under the slogan “Innovate Europe”, the priorities that will guide the Spanish presidency are:

  • Full enforcement of the Treaty of Lisbon.
  • Coordination of economic policies to boost recovery and sustainable growth throughout Europe: launch of Europe 2020.
  • Strengthening the foreign policy of the Union to become a true global actor.
  • Promotion of a Europe of rights and liberties at the service of its citizens.

With regard to the second priority, the Spanish Presidency Programme refers to environmental sustainability, moving towards a low-emission economic model, based on renewable energy and energy efficiency; the Energy Plan 2010-2014 will have an impact on this area and will be adopted at the coming Spring European Council. At least with regard to priorities, no mention is made of any other environmental subject such as biodiversity, the prevention of pollution, waste, etc.

The third priority mentions climate change again and the aspiration to continue leading on this subject on an international level, an idea which has not got off to a good start for the moment as recently seen at the Informal Council of EU Environment Minsters held in Seville.

The Programme also lists the forthcoming meetings. Below you can see those which are most directly related to the environment, which we will follow with great attention:

  • 12-13 February, Informal Meeting of Transport Ministers, A Coruña: Will the electric car be mentioned.?
  • 11-12 March, Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, Brussels.
  • 15 March, Environment Council, Brussels.
  • 6-7 April, Forest Protection Conference, Valsaín.
  • 12-14 April, Euro-Mediterranean Water Conference, Barcelona.
  • 11-12 May, Mediterranean Solar Plan Conference, Valencia.
  • 20 May, European Maritime Day, Gijón.
  • 31 May, Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, Brussels.

On another occasion we shall review the proposals and positions that different environment agents in civil society have taken with regard to the Spanish presidency, and I will outline some suggestions…

For the moment I will leave you with these documents: