European Environment Agency

The European Environment Agency (EEA) is the agency of the European Union (EU) which provides independent information on the environment.

European Environment Agency
EEA agency logo.svg
Agency overview
Formed30 October 1993 (1993-10-30)
JurisdictionEuropean Union
HeadquartersCopenhagen, Denmark
55°40′52″N 12°35′12″E / 55.681208°N 12.586609°E / 55.681208; 12.586609Coordinates: 55°40′52″N 12°35′12″E / 55.681208°N 12.586609°E / 55.681208; 12.586609
Agency executives
Key document
Websitewww.eea.europa.eu
Map
European Environment Agency is located in European Union
Copenhagen
Copenhagen
European Environment Agency (European Union)
European Environment Agency Building in Copenhagen in winter

DefinitionEdit

The European Environment Agency (EEA) is the agency of the European Union (EU) which provides independent information on the environment. Its goal is to help those involved in developing, implementing and evaluating environmental policy, and to inform the general public.

OrganizationEdit

The EEA was established by the European Economic Community (EEC) Regulation 1210/1990 (amended by EEC Regulation 933/1999 and EC Regulation 401/2009) and became operational in 1994, headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The agency is governed by a management board composed of representatives of the governments of its 32 member states, a European Commission representative and two scientists appointed by the European Parliament, assisted by its Scientific Committee.

The current Executive Director of the agency is Professor Hans Bruyninckx, who has been appointed for a five-year term. He is the successor of Professor Jacqueline McGlade.

Member countriesEdit

The member states of the European Union are members; however other states may become members of it by means of agreements concluded between them and the EU.

It was the first EU body to open its membership to the 13 candidate countries (pre-2004 enlargement).

The EEA has 32 member countries and six cooperating countries. The 33 member countries include the 27 European Union member states together with Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey.

Since Brexit in 2020, the UK is not a member of the EU anymore and therefore not a member state of the EEA.

The six Western Balkan countries are cooperating countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia as well as Kosovo under the UN Security Council Resolution 1244/99.[1] These cooperation activities are integrated into Eionet and are supported by the EU under the "Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance".

The EEA is an active member of the EPA Network.[2]

EU Member countries non-EU Member countries Cooperating countries
  Austria   Iceland   Albania
  Belgium   Liechtenstein   Bosnia and Herzegovina
  Bulgaria   Norway   Kosovo[3]
  Croatia    Switzerland   Montenegro
  Czech Republic   Turkey   North Macedonia
  Cyprus   Serbia
  Denmark
  Estonia
  Finland
  France
  Germany
  Greece
  Hungary
  Ireland
  Italy
  Latvia
  Lithuania
  Luxembourg
  Malta
  Netherlands
  Poland
  Portugal
  Romania
  Slovakia
  Slovenia
  Spain
  Sweden

Reports, data and knowledgeEdit

The European Environment Agency(EEA) produces assessments based on quality-assured data on a wide range of issues from biodiversity, air quality, transport to climate change. These assessments are closely linked to the European Union's environment policies and legislation and help monitor progress in some areas and indicate areas where additional efforts are needed.

As required in its founding regulation, the EEA publishes its flagship report the State and Outlook of Europe's environment (SOER), which is an integrated assessment, analysing trends, progress to targets as well as outlook for the mid- to long-term.

The EEA shares this information, including the datasets used in its assessments, through its main website and a number of thematic information platforms such as Biodiversity Information System for Europe (BISE) and ClimateADAPT. The Climate-ADAPT knowledge platform presents information and data on expected climatic changes, the vulnerability of regions and sectors, adaptation case studies, and adaptation options, adaptation planning tools, and EU policy.

European Nature Information SystemEdit

The European Nature Information System (EUNIS) provides access to the publicly available data in the EUNIS database for species, habitat types and protected sites across Europe. It is part of the European Biodiversity data centre (BDC), and is maintained by the EEA.

The database contains data[4]

  • on species, habitat types and designated sites from the framework of Natura 2000,
  • from material compiled by the European Topic Centre on Biological Diversity
  • mentioned in relevant international conventions and in the IUCN Red Lists,
  • collected in the framework of the EEA's reporting activities.

European environment information and observation networkEdit

The European environment information and observation network (Eionet) is a partnership network of the EEA and the countries. The EEA is responsible for developing the network and coordinating its activities. To do so, the EEA works closely together with national focal points (NFPs), typically national environment agencies or environment ministries which are responsible for coordinating national networks of the National Reference Centres (NRCs) involving many institutions (about 350 in all).

Apart from the NFPs and NRCs, Eionet currently includes covers seven European Topic Centres (ETCs):

  • ETC on Air Pollution, Transport, Noise and Industrial Pollution (ETC/ATNI)
  • ETC on Biological Diversity (ETC/BD)
  • ETC on Climate Change Impacts, Vulnerability and Adaptation (ETC/CCA)
  • ETC on Climate Change Mitigation and Energy (ETC/CME)
  • ETC on Inland, Coastal and Marine Waters (ETC/ICM)
  • ETC on Urban, Land and Soil Systems (ETC/ULS)
  • ETC on Waste and Materials in Green Economy (ETC/WMGE)

The European Environment Agency (EEA) implements the "Shared Environmental Information System" principles and best practices via projects such as the "ENI SEIS II EAST PROJECT" & the "ENI SEIS II SOUTH PROJECT" to support environmental protection within the six eastern partnership countries (ENP) & to contribute to the reduction in marine pollution in the Mediterranean through the shared availability & access to relevant environmental information. [5]

Budget management and dischargeEdit

As for every EU body and institution, the EEA's budget is subject to a discharge process, consisting of external examination of its budget execution and financial management, to ensure sound financial management of its budget. Since its establishment, the EEA has been granted discharge for its budget without exception. The EEA provides full access to its administrative and budgetary documents in its public documents register.

The discharge process for the 2010 budget required additional clarificatios. In February 2012, the European Parliament's Committee on Budgetary Control published a draft report, identifying areas of concern in the use of funds and its influence for the 2010 budget such as a 26% budget increase from 2009 to 2010 to €50 600 000.[6]: 8  and questioned that maximum competition and value-for-money principles were honored in hiring, also possible fictitious employees.[6]: 10 

The EEA's Executive Director refuted allegations of irregularities in a public hearing.[7] On 27 March 2012 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) voted on the report[8] and commended the cooperation between the Agency and NGOs working in the environmental area.[citation needed] On 23 October 2012, the European Parliament voted and granted the discharge to the European Environment Agency for its 2010 budget.[9]


Executive directorsEdit

Name Nationality Term(s)
Domingo Jiménez-Beltrán   Spain 1994–2003
Jacqueline McGlade   United Kingdom 2003–2013
Hans Bruyninckx   Belgium 2013–

International cooperationEdit

In addition to its 32 members and six Balkan cooperating countries, the EEA also cooperates and fosters partnerships with its neighbours and other countries and regions, mostly in the context of the European Neighbourhood Policy:[10]

  • EaP states: Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
  • UfM states: Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestinian Authority, Syria, Tunisia
  • other ENPI states: Russia
  • Central Asia states: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

Additionally the EEA cooperates with multiple international organizations and the corresponding agencies of the following countries:


Official languagesEdit

The 26 official languages used by the EEA are: Bulgarian, Czech, Croatian, Danish, German, Greek, English, Spanish, Estonian, Finnish, French, Hungarian, Icelandic, Italian, Lithuanian, Latvian, Malti, Dutch, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovak, Slovene, Swedish and Turkish.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Countries and Eionet, European Environment Agency, Retrieved on 24 July 2013.
  2. ^ European Network of the Heads of Environment Protection Agencies.
  3. ^ (under the UN Security Council Resolution 1244/99)
  4. ^ About EUNIS. Retrieved 2018-11-18.
  5. ^ https://eni-seis.eionet.europa.eu/
  6. ^ a b Draft Report on discharge on the implementation of the budget of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2010 14 pages, 6 February 2012
  7. ^ Valentina Pop EU agencies rebuked over spending 2 March 2012. EU Observer website.
  8. ^ Agenda for March 27, 2011 meeting of the Committee on Budgetary Control.
  9. ^ 2012/804/EU: Decision of the European Parliament of 23 October 2012 on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2010, 20 December 2012, retrieved 13 May 2020
  10. ^ "International Cooperation". eea.europa.eu. European Environment Agency. 22 July 2016. Retrieved 23 April 2017. (scroll down to "European Neighborhood Project")
  11. ^ EU-OSHA.

External linksEdit