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WFO welcomes the launch of the EU's 7th Environment Action Programme

(PresseBox) (Brussels, ) European Environment Commissioner, Mr. Janez Potočnik, today officially launched the much awaited '7th Environment Action Programme' of the EU which is titled "Living well, within the limits of our planet". This initiative concentrates on resource efficiency and the need for Europe to move away from 'business as usual' and address environmental concerns.

WFO welcomes this initiative and its goals to further the development of EU environmental policy. The first Environment Action programme of the EU was launched in 1973 and since then a lot of progress has already been made with regards to protecting the environment and guiding EU Member States in doing so. The 7th EAP aims to build on the work already achieved and guide EU environmental policy up until 2020.

Part of the 7th EAP pays particular attention to marine litter and highlights concerns that EU27 Member States may not actually achieve the targets of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, particularly that of achieving 'good environmental status' for EU waters by 2020. The 7th EAP commits to protect, conserve and enhance the EU's natural capital and states the need for an 'EU-wide' quantitative reduction target for marine litter.

WFO also supports the 7th EAP's provisions on waste management and the pursuit of a zero landfill for recyclable and compostable materials. Speaking on the launch of the 7th EAP, WFO Chair Mrs. Anna Rosbach MEP stated that "this is a welcomed initiative following months and months of stakeholder and EU discussions on whether to continue with an EAP following the 6th EAP. Its provision to introduce an EU-wide target for marine litter reduction is, in fact, mirrored by the position of many environmentalists, NGOs and ordinary EU citizens who care for our waters".

The 7th EAP will now be discussed by the European Parliament and the Council over the coming months and several policy proposals, both legislative and non-legislative, are likely to follow.

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