28 September 2020

234 civil society organisations and academics from across Europe and the world are expressing deep concerns with the direction being taken by the European Commission in its new communications on Critical Raw Materials, in this open letter. Reacting to the Commission's plans published on Friday 4th September, the signatories urge the Commission to realign strategies on raw materials with the interests of the planet and communities.

30 April 2020

Plans for a 'European Green Deal' were presented by the European Commission as a "man on the moon" moment, which it claimed would herald an economic paradigm shift. But while the language is full of promise, the strong rhetoric disguises only moderate proposals.

Friends of the Earth Europe has developed five over-arching principles to guide decision-making around a European Green Deal.

A European Green Deal capable of delivering systemic change, and putting us on a path to a just and sustainable future, must be based on these Principles for Transformation:

14 February 2020

Together with other NGOs and academics, this position paper sets out why we need to set targets to reduce EU resource consumption and waste generation in the European Commission's new Circular Economy Action Plan, ahead of its release in March 2020. We urge that a headline target to halve the EU material footprint by 2030 is included and that a binding EU target to cap waste absolute generation per capita is set.

25 September 2018

The ‘Manifesto for a Sustainable Europe for its Citizens’ sets out a future of Europe based on core ethical values and sustainable development: democracy and transparency, social and environmental justice, human rights, the rule of law, equality, and solidarity. It states that European policies, rules and standards should that do what they were intended for: protect and safeguard well-being and health, ensure safety and freedom for people and protection of the climate and the environment, and serve present and future generations in and outside Europe.

17 September 2018

In the booklet Sufficiency: Moving beyond the gospel of eco-efficiency, Friends of the Earth Europe suggested introducing hard limitations to unsustainable trends—in particular to overconsumption—and putting emphasis on distributional justice in the economy. But how can we go about the task of building a 'sufficient' Europe?

4 September 2018

Taxing plastics can help lead to a responsible use of the material by triggering the necessary reduction of both production and consumption, a new report finds. However, a plastic tax will only work if designed to influence producer and consumer behaviour, rather than raising revenue.

27 March 2018

To revert the current ecological overshoot and build a sustainable society, we have to collectively engage in changing our economic model.

7 December 2016

A number of existing and emerging EU policies and initiatives to green plastics, packaging, fuels and more through plant-based sources are at risk of backfiring with big social and environmental impacts.

Substituting fossil-based products for plant-based ones is the core idea of the 'bioeconomy', which is promoted by the EU, governments and industry, with the promised benefit of reduced reliance on fossil fuels. However, this can come at a high environmental and social price. Friends of the Earth Europe outline their policy positions on the bioeconomy in this briefing.

7 December 2016

A number of existing and emerging EU policies and initiatives to green plastics, packaging, fuels and more through plant-based sources are at risk of backfiring with big social and environmental impacts, according to this new report.

Substituting fossil-based products for plant-based ones is the core idea of the 'bioeconomy', which is promoted in the EU through renewable energy policies and a specific Bioeconomy Strategy, and is likely to be included in future legislation on plastics and packaging.

27 July 2016

The European Union uses more than its fair share of global land, with high environmental and social impacts. In 2010, the amount of land used to satisfy our consumption, solely of agricultural goods and services, amounted to 269 million hectares. Almost 40% of this land is outside Europe, an area the size of Italy and France combined.

This report shows why the EU has a responsibility in putting efforts towards measuring, monitoring and reducing its global Land Footprint, and how this could be supported by using policy tools and other initiatives.

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