In a meeting in Luxembourg on 28 October, environment ministers adopted conclusions on ‘greening’ the European Semester and the Europe 2020 strategy.
The conclusions recognise that a greener economy contributes to long term prosperity, and highlight the need for a transition towards a resource efficient circular economy. In particular, they underline the need for:
- better integrating resource efficiency in the Europe 2020 strategy, through the introduction of a non-binding aspirational target
- taking into consideration circular economy principles and the potential for green employment in the European Semester
- conducting a more structured and regular reporting on green skills, employment and growth as part of the joint employment report annexed to the annual growth survey
- further developing the definition of green jobs, to avoid limiting it to jobs in ‘green sectors’
- improving the measurement methodology to better account for progress towards resource efficiency at national level
- developing a system to asses natural resources, biodiversity and the ecosystem services they provide (EU natural capita)
- providing a strengthened role of the environment ministers in the European Semester
These conclusions are part of the mid-term review of the 2020 strategy. Together with debates in other Council configurations, they will be the basis for a synthesis report to be endorsed by the European Council in December.
Other topics on the agenda
The Council also held a debate on a proposed directive on waste management. It focused on the level of ambition of the proposal, the need for further work on some of the measures included and the consideration of waste prevention and reuse issues.
Ministers discussed how to take forward the 2030 Climate and Energy framework agreed by the European Council last week. They also adopted conclusions defining the EU position for the Lima conference, which will bring together the parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Council conclusions on Preparations for the 20th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the 10th session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol