European Commission stresses its intention with regard to the Fitness Check at Green Week
Last week the European Commission’s Green Week took place in Brussels. The EC took this opportunity to stress their intention with regard to the Fitness Check of the Birds and Habitats Directives.
Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission, welcomed the participants and emphasised the importance of the environment. He believes that the Fitness Check is needed as some of the legislation dates back to 1975. “Updating is not lowering standards, better regulation is not lowering standards”, he stated. “I give you the guarantee: we are not going to lower standards. We need higher standards. But we also need more modern ways of achieving those higher standards. No scaling back on the objective, I give you the guarantee. And I invite you to watch us very carefully and very critically, and not just take my word for it, but check our actions. I promise you will not be disappointed.”
The European Commission commenced a Fitness Check of the Birds and Habitats Directives in 2014. The Fitness Check aims to assess how the Directives are working, if they are fit for purpose and how they can be improved.
As part of this process a public consultation has been launched, aimed at members of the public and organisations. The consultation will close on 24 July and can be completed online. Preliminary results of the evaluation will then be presented at a dedicated conference in October 2015.