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Implementing the Aarhus Convention: Access to justice in environmental matters

11-10-2017

The Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters is an international agreement that gives the public a number of rights with regard to the environment. It consists of three pillars, one of them covering the right of access to justice in cases of non-compliance with environmental law. Implementation of the convention's provisions on access to justice have been the focus of two recent documents, one published by the ...

The Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters is an international agreement that gives the public a number of rights with regard to the environment. It consists of three pillars, one of them covering the right of access to justice in cases of non-compliance with environmental law. Implementation of the convention's provisions on access to justice have been the focus of two recent documents, one published by the European Commission and the other by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee. While the European Commission examines the implementation of the convention provisions in the Member States, the UNECE Committee takes a critical look at implementation at EU level. Both papers point to shortcomings, in particular with regard to the right of non-governmental organisations to be heard in court. Regarding implementation at Member State level, the Commission has launched a dialogue procedure with each Member State concerned. When it comes to implementation at EU level, the convention's Meeting of the Parties in September 2017 postponed its decision on the findings of the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee in respect of the EU to its next meeting in 2021.

EU Trade Policy and the Wildlife Trade

06-12-2016

The wildlife trade is one of the most lucrative trades in the world. The legal trade into the EU alone is worth EUR 100 billion annually, while the global illegal wildlife trade is estimated to be worth between EUR 8 and 20 billion annually. The trade is highly complex and its legal and illegal forms are often connected. The illegal wildlife trade cannot be tackled via the use of trade policy alone; instead trade instruments need to be used in conjunction with broader means of addressing the wide ...

The wildlife trade is one of the most lucrative trades in the world. The legal trade into the EU alone is worth EUR 100 billion annually, while the global illegal wildlife trade is estimated to be worth between EUR 8 and 20 billion annually. The trade is highly complex and its legal and illegal forms are often connected. The illegal wildlife trade cannot be tackled via the use of trade policy alone; instead trade instruments need to be used in conjunction with broader means of addressing the wide range of reasons why wildlife is traded illegally first place. This includes the need to reduce poverty and inequality in source countries, demand reduction in consumer countries and tackling corruption, organised crime, poor enforcement and low penalties in many source, transit and end user markets. The EU is also facing some new challenges in the legal and illegal wildlife trade, emanating from the growth of e-commerce, expansion of private mailing centres and the growth of containerisation. The EU already has a strong track record in promoting a legal and sustainable trade, while also attempting to tackle the illegal wildlife trade. The EU already has a legal framework (EUWTR) which sets out stricter arrangements than CITES for trading in wildlife products. It has played an active role at CITES since it joined as a member in 2015, and all 20 EU proposals were accepted at CITES CoP17 in 2016. It now has an opportunity to use trade policy to embed and develop this track record further.

Wildlife Crime

15-06-2016

This briefing provides a background and abstracts of the study on Wildlife crime in the European Union and five in-depth analyses of the situation in Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the UK, which were prepared for the ENVI Committee in 2016.

This briefing provides a background and abstracts of the study on Wildlife crime in the European Union and five in-depth analyses of the situation in Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and the UK, which were prepared for the ENVI Committee in 2016.

Externý autor

Stephan SINA, Christiane GERSTETTER, Lucas PORSCH, Ennid ROBERTS, Lucy O. SMITH, Katharina KLAAS and Teresa FAJARDO DE CASTILLO

Wildlife Crime in the Netherlands

15-03-2016

This analysis on wildlife crime was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in the Netherlands based on available documents and empirical research including interviews. The study identifies main routes and species linked to illegal wildlife trade as well as Dutch efforts to combat wildlife crime.

This analysis on wildlife crime was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in the Netherlands based on available documents and empirical research including interviews. The study identifies main routes and species linked to illegal wildlife trade as well as Dutch efforts to combat wildlife crime.

Externý autor

Nicolien VAN DER GRIJP

Wildlife Crime in Germany

15-03-2016

This report on wildlife crime in Germany was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in Germany and the efforts undertaken to combat it. It is based on available documents, mainly CITES biennial reports, and empirical research including interviews.

This report on wildlife crime in Germany was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in Germany and the efforts undertaken to combat it. It is based on available documents, mainly CITES biennial reports, and empirical research including interviews.

Externý autor

Stephan SINA, Christiane GERSTETTER and Katharina KLAAS

Wildlife Crime in Poland

15-03-2016

This analysis on wildlife crime was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in Poland based on available documents and empirical research including interviews. The study identifies main routes and species linked to illegal wildlife trade as well as Polish efforts to combat wildlife crime.

This analysis on wildlife crime was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in Poland based on available documents and empirical research including interviews. The study identifies main routes and species linked to illegal wildlife trade as well as Polish efforts to combat wildlife crime.

Externý autor

Kamila PAQUEL

Wildlife Crime in Spain

15-03-2016

This paper provides an in-depth analysis of wildlife crime and efforts to combat it in Spain. It identifies best practices by law enforcement agencies: the Spanish Administrative Authority of CITES, the special police for the protection of nature (SEPRONA) and the Special Prosecutor’s Office. In addition, it reports on shortcomings in enforcement and resources. The analysis was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety.

This paper provides an in-depth analysis of wildlife crime and efforts to combat it in Spain. It identifies best practices by law enforcement agencies: the Spanish Administrative Authority of CITES, the special police for the protection of nature (SEPRONA) and the Special Prosecutor’s Office. In addition, it reports on shortcomings in enforcement and resources. The analysis was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety.

Externý autor

Teresa FAJARDO DE CASTILLO

Wildlife Crime in the United Kingdom

15-03-2016

This paper provides an in-depth analysis of wildlife crime and efforts to combat it in the UK. It was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It presents an overview of significant seizures and criminal prosecutions, discusses the involvement of organised crime groups and provides an insight on relevant actors, the current domestic legislative framework and the actions taken by the UK to tackle wildlife crime.

This paper provides an in-depth analysis of wildlife crime and efforts to combat it in the UK. It was commissioned by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety. It presents an overview of significant seizures and criminal prosecutions, discusses the involvement of organised crime groups and provides an insight on relevant actors, the current domestic legislative framework and the actions taken by the UK to tackle wildlife crime.

Externý autor

Andrea ILLES

Wildlife Crime

15-03-2016

This study gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in Europe based on available documents, EU-Twix data and empirical research including interviews. The study identifies main routes and species linked to illegal wildlife trade, as well as enforcement deficits. It also develops policy recommendations in view of the upcoming EU Action Plan.

This study gives an overview of the state of wildlife crime in Europe based on available documents, EU-Twix data and empirical research including interviews. The study identifies main routes and species linked to illegal wildlife trade, as well as enforcement deficits. It also develops policy recommendations in view of the upcoming EU Action Plan.

Externý autor

Stephan SINA, Christiane GERSTETTER, Lucas PORSCH, Ennid ROBERTS, Lucy O. SMITH, Katharina KLAAS and Teresa FAJARDO DE CASTILLO

Organised crime in the European Union

21-10-2015

It is impossible to measure accurately the socio-economic cost of crime. However, the estimates available invariably quote very high figures, which lead to reflection in times of financial crisis and austerity. Numerous organised crime groups are active in the EU, often with cross-border reach and multi-ethnic composition. There is a clear tendency of rigid and hierarchical structures being replaced by loose networks of small and volatile groups. These may be better adapted to the modern world with ...

It is impossible to measure accurately the socio-economic cost of crime. However, the estimates available invariably quote very high figures, which lead to reflection in times of financial crisis and austerity. Numerous organised crime groups are active in the EU, often with cross-border reach and multi-ethnic composition. There is a clear tendency of rigid and hierarchical structures being replaced by loose networks of small and volatile groups. These may be better adapted to the modern world with its rapid changes. Some groups, having established a strong position in their countries of origin, go on to engage in illicit markets throughout the EU. They make use of their reputations and sophistication in certain types of crime to form profitable alliances with other groups. Italian, Russian and Albanian-speaking organisations are but a few of the 'leaders' in transnational crime in the EU. It is difficult to think of a criminal activity that would not be considered by organised crime, with the profit and risk involved being the major criteria for their possible involvement. Apart from 'traditional' crime, including drug trafficking, such groups increasingly engage in legal business activities, which enables them to launder illegal gains, while benefiting from attractive licit markets. In any case, collusion of corrupt officials and dishonest businessmen is crucial to the success of such criminal enterprises. Please click here for the full publication in PDF format