Adapting EU governance for a more sustainable future

12-11-2009 | Publication

This paper identifies a number of internal and external governance issues influencing the EU's capacity to bring itself and the rest of the world on a more sustainable path. By using different possible scenarios for the EU, it points out that their viability is contingent on how the European integration process and the international system will develop.

Environmental and sustainable development agenda

Views on desired institutional developments in the EU of relevance to its environmental and sustainable development agenda are closely related to the outcome of fundamental debates on European cooperation. This paper identifies a number of internal and external governance issues influencing the EU's capacity to bring itself and the rest of the world on a more sustainable path.

The analysis focuses on three areas: climate change and energy, land use and biodiversity, and transport. For these areas sustainable development visions and the pathways to achieve them have been identified in the study Getting into the right lane for 2050, published by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL) and the Stockholm Resilience Centre (SRC). This paper provided input into this study by specifically addressing governance and institutional issues that need to be on the agenda of the new European Commission to bring the visions closer to reality. It also considers possible directions for policy-making.

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