Directions for the future EU environment policy

On 11 June 2009, Prague will host a Presidency conference on Strategic Perspectives for the Future EU Environment Policy, organised by the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic.

The aim of the conference is to summarise the results achieved in the EU environment policy since 2002, the year of the coming into force of the 6th EU Environment Action Programme. European Commission representative Timo Mäkelä will present the main features of the Action Programme and the Communication on implementing European Community Environmental Law. Elisabeth Freytag, Chair of the European Sustainable Development Network, will then speak about the EU Sustainable Development Strategy. A representative of the European Parliament will present the key legislative acts in the area of the environment adopted since 2002.

In the following section, Member State delegates will discuss the state of play of the environment policy and the main outstanding issues. An analysis of the current state of the environment will be presented by a representative of the European Environment Agency. Next, the Czech Presidency will sum up the achievements of EU environmental legislation in the first half of 2009. Finally, the Secretary General of the European Environmental Bureau, John Hontelez, will describe the current developments in the political discussion and the main outstanding issues in key environmental agendas.

In the last section, the delegates will outline the directions for the future environment policy. Timo Mäkelä will present the Commission Strategy for 2010 and the state of work on the 7th EU Environment Action Programme.

The environmental priorities of the Swedish Presidency of the EU Council in the second half of 2009 will be presented by a representative of the Swedish Environment Ministry. Czech Deputy Environment Minister Rut Bízková will speak about the objectives of the environment policy in the Czech Republic up to 2020. A vision for the European environment policy will be presented by senator and environmentalist Bedřich Moldan.

The conference will take place against the backdrop of several current events that have a significant impact on the development of the EU environmental policy. These include the end of the term of office of the European Parliament and the European Commission and the approaching end of the period covered by the 6th EU Environment Action Programme. “This programme is a strategic EU document which lays down a basic framework for the political priorities of the European Commission in the field of the environment for 2002-2012”, said Czech Environment Minister and EU Environment Council President Ladislav Miko, who will open the conference on behalf of the Czech Presidency.

The conference will be attended by delegates from key EU institutions – the European Commission, the European Parliament and the EU Council (representatives of the Czech and Swedish Presidencies), and also representatives of scientific institutions, state administration, the industry and the non-profit sector.

Jakub Kaspar, Spokesperson of the MoE