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European Environment Agency

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To support sustainable development and to help achieve significant and measurable improvement in Europe's environment, the European Environment Agency has the task of providing policy-making agents and the public with reliable and comparable information on the environment, in cooperation with the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

ACT

Council Regulation (EEC) No 1210/90 of 7 May 1990 on the establishment of the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network [See amending acts].

SUMMARY

The Regulation establishes the European Environment Agency (EEA), an independent body whose objective is to protect and improve the environment in accordance with the provisions of the Treaty and Community environment action programmes, with a view to establishing sustainable development within the Community.

To achieve this, the Agency must provide the Community and the Member States with information which is objective, reliable and comparable at European level and which will enable them to take the measures required to protect the environment, evaluate the implementation of the measures and ensure that the public is properly informed on the state of the environment.

The Agency carries out the following functions:

  • recording, collecting, assessing and transmitting data on the state of the environment;
  • providing the Community and the Member States with the objective information that they require to draw up and implement appropriate and effective environment policies;
  • helping to monitor environmental measures;
  • working on the comparability of data at European level;
  • promoting the development and application of environmental forecasting techniques;
  • ensuring that reliable information on the environment is widely circulated.

The principal areas of work of the Agency are:

  • air quality;
  • water quality;
  • the state of the soil, and of fauna and flora;
  • land use and natural resources;
  • waste management;
  • noise emissions;
  • chemical substances;
  • protection of coastal areas and the marine environment.

The Agency may cooperate in the exchange of information with other bodies, including the IMPEL network ("Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Law" - information network on environment legislation linking the Member States and the Commission).

The European Environment Information and Observation Network (EIONET) comprises the main component elements of the national information networks and the information from the topic centres.

Member States are obliged to inform the Agency of the main component elements of their national environment information networks.

The Agency is open to countries that are not members of the European Union, and currently has 32 members (the 25 EU Member States, the 3 candidate countries for accession, plus Liechtenstein, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland).

The Agency had to conduct an evaluation of its performance and efficiency before 15 September 1999 and submit a report to the management board, the Commission, the Council and the European Parliament.

By 31 December 2003 at the latest, on the basis of a report from the Commission (see "Related acts"), the Council had to review the progress of, and tasks undertaken by, the Agency in relation to the Community's environment policy.

REFERENCES

ActEntry into force - Date of expiryDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Regulation (EEC) No 1210/9030.10.1993-OJ L 120 of 11.5.1990

Amending act(s)Entry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Regulation (EC) No 933/19995.5.1999-OJ L 117 of 5.5.1999
Regulation (EC) No 1641/20031.10.2003-OJ L 245 of 29.9.2003

RELATED ACTS

Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 31 October 2007 on the establishment of the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network [COM(2007) 667 final - Not published in the Official Journal].


The aim of this proposal is to consolidate Regulation (EEC) No 1210/90, which it is intended to replace: the proposal comprises a formal amendment bringing together the original instrument and its subsequent amendments in one single legislative act without altering the fundamental provisions.

Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 May 2005 amending Regulation (EEC) No 1210/90 on the establishment of the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network as regards the term of office of the Executive Director [COM(2005) 190 final - Official Journal C 172, 12 July 2005].

Report of 22 December 2003 from the Commission to the Council: Review of the European Environment Agency (EEA) [COM(2003) 800 final - Official Journal C 96, 21.4.2004].


This report assesses the EEA's contribution to EU environment policy from 1994, when the Agency began operating, to 2003. It notes the Agency's key role in determining the state of and trends in the environment in Europe, particularly for the Commission, which is its principal user; the report also underlines, however, that the EEA has not sufficiently covered some areas (particularly noise emissions and chemical substances) and that a lack of financial resources has prevented it from meeting all demands. The report also makes recommendations regarding the Agency and its main partners with a view to improving the Agency's contribution. In this respect, it notes that:

  • the description of the Agency's tasks and priorities should be clearer and more specific;
  • the EEA's autonomy must be safeguarded;
  • the Commission (as the budgetary authority) should provide the Agency with the resources it needs in order to perform its tasks and achieve its objectives, while the EEA, for its part, should not undertake work which is at or beyond the borderline of its terms of reference without the guarantee that such work can be financed from additional income;
  • the EEA must continue to align its activities with the main priority themes of European environment policy and should gradually extend its support activities along the entire decision-making process;
  • the Agency should cooperate more closely with complementary Community or international bodies;
  • EIONET should be strengthened and the Agency should remedy the problems relating to the operation of the European Topic Centres;
  • the Agency should assess the relevance of its products, particularly for its target audience, and improve communication with the general public.

Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament of 7 July 1995 regarding the review of the implementation of Council Regulation (EEC) No 1210/90 on the establishment of the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network [COM(95) 325 final - Not published in the Official Journal].


The communication deals with the following three areas: the possibility of proposing new tasks for the European Environment Agency; the need to create, develop and improve the infrastructure of the European Environment Information and Observation Network; the need to define the nature of third countries' participation in the Agency.

Decision taken by common Agreement between the Representatives of the Governments of the Member States, meeting at Head of State and Government level, on the location of the seats of certain bodies and departments of the European Communities and of Europol [Official Journal C 323, 30.11.1993]


This Decision establishes the European Environment Agency's seat in Copenhagen.

Financial management of the Agency

Report [Official Journal C 312, 19.12.2006]
Report on the annual accounts of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2005 together with the Agency's replies

Report [Official Journal C 332, 28.12.2005]
Report on the annual accounts of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2004 together with the Agency's replies

Report [Official Journal C 324, 30.12.2004]
Report on the annual accounts of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2003 together with the Agency's replies

Report [Official Journal C 319, 30.12.2003]
Report on the financial statements of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2002 together with the Agency's replies.

Report [Official Journal C 326, 27.12.2002]
Report on the financial statements of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2001 together with the Agency's replies.

Report [Official Journal C 372, 28.12.2001]
Report on the financial statements of the European Environment Agency for the financial year ended 31 December 2000 together with the Agency's replies.

Report [Official Journal C 373, 27.12.2000]
Report on the financial statements of the European Environment Agency (EEA - Copenhagen) for the financial year ended 31 December 1999 together with the Agency's replies.

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2008 [Official Journal L 91 of 2.4.2008]

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2007 [Official Journal L 126, 16.5.2007]

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2006 [Official Journal L 67, 8.3.2006]

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2004 [Official Journal L 377, 23.12.2004]

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2003 [Official Journal L 129, 26.5.2003]

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2002 [Official Journal L 178, 9.7.2002]

Statement of revenue and expenditure of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2001 [Official Journal L 207, 31.7.2001]

Accession of new members

Decision 2006/235/EC [Official Journal L 90 of 28.3.2006]


Council Decision of 27 February 2006 on the conclusion, on behalf of the European Community, of the Agreement between the European Community and the Swiss Confederation concerning the latter's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network

Decision 2001/582/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Czech Republic concerning the Czech Republic's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/583/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Poland concerning the Republic of Poland's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/584/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Romania concerning Romania's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/585/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Slovenia concerning the Republic of Slovenia's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/586/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Hungary concerning the Republic of Hungary's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/587/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Latvia concerning the Republic of Latvia's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/588/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Lithuania concerning the Republic of Lithuania's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/589/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Bulgaria concerning the Republic of Bulgaria's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/590/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Slovak Republic concerning the Slovak Republic's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/591/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Estonia concerning the Republic of Estonia's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/592/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Cyprus concerning the Republic of Cyprus's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/593/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Malta concerning the Republic of Malta's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

Decision 2001/594/EC [Official Journal L 213 of 7.8.2001]
Council Decision of 18 June 2001 on the conclusion of the Agreement between the European Community and the Republic of Turkey concerning the Republic of Turkey's participation in the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network.

 
Last updated: 02.04.2008
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