National Government Interventions in a Global Arena
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Edited by Frank Wijen, Kees Zoeteman, Jan Pieters and Paul van Seters
Chapter 23: The Influence of Non-Governmental Environmental Organisations on EU Policies
23. The Influence of Non-Governmental Environmental Organisations on EU Policies John Hontelez SUMMARY The European Environmental Bureau (EEB) is a democratic federation of 145 European environmental organisations. The European Union (EU) has fulfilled a prominent role in environmental legislation, though this may collide with the function of promoting a single market. The EEB, speaking on behalf of millions of citizens, defends environmental interests at the different EU institutions. The EEB’s informal and formal EU contacts have had a significant impact in several areas, including the Lisbon Treaty, EU enlargement, environmental action programmes, chemicals, and biofuels. The EEB and the EU face major future challenges, calling for a comprehensive approach towards sustainable development, including collaboration with civil society and progressive business. INTRODUCTION In 2013, the EU1 will look back at 40 years of coordinating environmental policies. Nature-protection organisations and the emerging environmental movement in the originally nine member states understood from the start that they had to follow and influence EU environmental policy-making and set up, in 1974, the EEB. Until 1985, this was the only representation of environmental organisations in ‘Brussels’. In 2010, at least 20 organisations with overall some 150 activists were active in 1 With the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty in 2009, the notion of ‘European Community’ has been replaced with ‘European Union’. I will use only that term in this chapter, even though it used to be the ‘Treaty Establishing the European Community’ that formed the legal base for European environmental policies. 663 M2782...
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