Environment news

Estimated 1 455 tonnes of plastic floating in the Mediterranean

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
A rough total of 1 455 tonnes of floating plastic is present across the Mediterranean, estimates a new study. Researchers gathered floating plastics using trawl nets and found that microplastics with a surface area of around 1 square milimetre (mm2) were the most abundant size of plastic particles found.
Categories: Environment news

Nitrous oxide could be removed from the atmosphere with simultaneous generation of renewable energy

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a potent greenhouse gas and atmospheric pollutant. A new study proposes tackling both problems by removing N2O from the atmosphere using a combination of two innovative technologies — photocatalytic breakdown of the N2O to nitrogen and oxygen, and this within a solar chimney power plant that generates renewable electricity. Although some way off from commercial development, the researchers say this approach is feasible, and they outline how these two technologies can be integrated to reduce the climate impact and polluting effects of N2O emissions.
Categories: Environment news

New method of developing agri-environment schemes proposes €3 million saving in Germany

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
A method for developing more cost-effective agri-environment schemes is outlined in a recent study. The procedure can be used over large areas, accounts for hundreds of management regimes and several different endangered species. The model is one of the first to account for the timing of measures and, when applied to Saxony in Germany, proposed savings of over €3 million, while also improving some conservation outcomes.
Categories: Environment news

Car-free cities: healthier citizens

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
No cities are yet fully car-free, but many have managed or plan to restrict access to city centres for privately owned combustion-engine passenger cars. Health benefits will come from reduced traffic-related air pollution, less noise and lower levels of heat emitted from vehicles. The greatest health benefit, however, is likely to come from increased physical activity as people walk, cycle and move to catch public transport, according to a review of the potential health benefits of car-free cities.
Categories: Environment news

Green public procurement: a method to implement environmental policy

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
Green public procurement (GPP) – authorities considering environmental criteria when allocating contracts to private suppliers – is becoming increasingly popular as an environmental policy instrument. This study analysed data from Swedish cleaning service procurements, finding a ‘weak’ effect on supplier behaviour in this situation. The researchers say that, for GPP to be an effective policy instrument, it is important to consider suppliers’ decisions to participate in procurement and to screen them against mandatory green criteria.
Categories: Environment news

Climate change and transport: effects of sea-level rise on an English railway line

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
Climate change will have major consequences for transport networks, especially those located on coastlines. This study assessed the impact of projected sea-level rise on a vulnerable stretch of railway line on the coast of South West England. The authors say their semi-empirical modelling method could provide guidance to policymakers worldwide.
Categories: Environment news

Invasive alien species in Europe: new framework shows scale and impact is increasing

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
Invasive alien species pose a threat to biodiversity, human health and the economy. This study describes six alien species indicators for Europe, showing that the scale and impact of biological invasions are increasing across all indicators. The societal response has also increased in recent years. The researchers say their framework could serve as a basis for monitoring the efficacy of recent EU legislation.
Categories: Environment news

Subway stations with platform sliding doors and good ventilation reduce passengers’ exposure to PM2.5

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
Underground trains are among the most widely used public transport systems in cities worldwide. A study investigating the chemical composition and source of particles in Barcelona subway stations found that a new station design, with sliding doors that separate the platform from the tunnel and good ventilation, reduced the concentration of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) by over 50% compared with older station designs.
Categories: Environment news

Potential for more efficient energy, land and phosphorus use by 2050

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
There is a large potential to improve the global efficiency of energy, land and phosphorus use, finds new research which modelled the effects of four worldwide scenarios between 2010 and 2050. An ‘ambitious resource strategy’ could moderate the increases in energy use (+25% globally instead of +80% in the baseline scenario), phosphorus use (+9% instead of +40%) and arable land (-9% globally, instead of + 4%).
Categories: Environment news

Lake Como contaminated with chemicals banned in the 1970s

DG ENV - Fri, 09/02/2018 - 16:06
Research has found evidence for recent contamination of Lake Como, northern Italy, with chemicals banned in the EU since the 1970s. Levels of DDT and PCBs in sediment, aquatic microorganisms and fish were examined. The results suggest glacial meltwater as a source for renewed DDT contamination and show recent contamination of fish above safe levels. The findings demonstrate the need for continued monitoring of persistent organic pollutants in European waters.
Categories: Environment news

Annex: 10 new projects under the LIFE funding programme for the Environment and Climate Action

Environment - Thu, 08/02/2018 - 12:01
European Commission - Fact Sheet Brussels, 8 February 2018 The European Commission has approved an investment package of €98.2 million to support Europe's transition to a low-carbon, circular economy under the new LIFE funding programme for the Environment and Climate Action.
Categories: Environment news

Annex: 10 new projects under the LIFE funding programme for the Environment and Climate Action

Climate Action - Thu, 08/02/2018 - 12:01
European Commission - Fact Sheet Brussels, 8 February 2018 The European Commission has approved an investment package of €98.2 million to support Europe's transition to a low-carbon, circular economy under the new LIFE funding programme for the Environment and Climate Action.
Categories: Environment news

Member States to benefit from €98.2 million in investments to improve citizens' quality of life

Environment - Thu, 08/02/2018 - 12:00
European Commission - Press release Brussels, 8 February 2018 The European Commission has approved an investment package of €98.2 million to support Europe's transition to a low-carbon, circular economy under the new LIFE funding programme for the Environment and Climate Action.
Categories: Environment news

Member States to benefit from €98.2 million in investments to improve citizens' quality of life

Climate Action - Thu, 08/02/2018 - 12:00
European Commission - Press release Brussels, 8 February 2018 The European Commission has approved an investment package of €98.2 million to support Europe's transition to a low-carbon, circular economy under the new LIFE funding programme for the Environment and Climate Action.
Categories: Environment news

Opening remarks of First Vice-President Timmermans and Commissioner Vella at the Press Conference on the Revision of the EU Drinking Water Directive

Environment - Thu, 01/02/2018 - 18:34
European Commission - Speech - [Check Against Delivery] Brussels, 1 February 2018 Remarks of First Vice-President Frans Timmermans Good afternoon to all of you. I'm really pleased to be here with Commissioner Vella in a week which has seen him shining a light on the work the Commission does in...
Categories: Environment news

Safer drinking water for all Europeans

Environment - Thu, 01/02/2018 - 12:35
European Commission - Press release Brussels, 1 February 2018 Revised European legislation proposed by the European Commission today will improve the quality of drinking water and access to it as well as provide better information to citizens.
Categories: Environment news

Safer drinking water for all Europeans: Questions and Answers

Environment - Thu, 01/02/2018 - 12:35
European Commission - Fact Sheet Brussels, 1 February 2018 Questions and Answers on the revision of the Drinking Water Directive. Why is the Commission revising the Drinking Water Directive? The European Commission wants to continue to ensure the provision of high-quality drinking water in light of the latest scientific advice,...
Categories: Environment news

Statement by Commissioner Karmenu Vella following Air Quality Ministerial meeting

Environment - Tue, 30/01/2018 - 11:47
European Commission - Statement Brussels, 30 January 2018 Good morning ladies and gentlemen. A few words about this morning's Air Quality ministerial meeting. This Commission has consistently said that it wishes to be 'big on the big things'.
Categories: Environment news

President Juncker takes part in the launch of the European Year of Cultural Heritage in Belgium

Presidency - Mon, 29/01/2018 - 15:09
European Commission - Press release Brussels, 29 January 2018 On Wednesday 31 January 2018, President Juncker and several members of the College of Commissioners will attend the launch of the European Year of Cultural Heritage at the invitation of the Mayor of Brussels, Philippe Close.
Categories: Environment news

Message by President Jean-Claude Juncker on the occasion of Holocaust Remembrance Day 2018

Presidency - Fri, 26/01/2018 - 12:05
European Commission - Statement Brussels, 26 January 2018 The 27th of January is a date marked in history by sorrow and grief. On this day 73 years ago, Allied Forces liberated the concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau and brought the horrors perpetrated there to an end.
Categories: Environment news

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