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Europe sets a green course towards 2020

08-06-2012 12:00:00

A green transition of Europe has been an important priority for the Minister for the Environment Ida Auken during the Danish Presidency.

Photo: Council of the European Union
Minister for the Environment Ida Auken

On Monday the 11th of June, the European Ministers for environment and climate are gathering for important negotiations. The ministers are to agree on the cornerstones in a new 7th Environment Action Programme. The programme will lead the way for an ambitious environmental policy and transition towards a green economy in Europe 2020.

Next month the 6th Environmental Program will expire, and it has been a top priority for Minister for the Environment Ida Auken during the Danish Presidency to set the stage for a green transition of Europe.

"Europe has been badly affected by the financial crises, but the solution is not to avoid the environmental agenda with the excuse that a cleaner environment is costly. A green transition of Europe is precisely the way to recover from the financial crisis."  

Ida Auken hopes that the ministers will agree to ambitious council conclusions on the 7 Environmental Action Programme, as well as setting a powerful political direction for the environmental policy agenda towards 2020, while also being a constructive input for the Head of States’ EU 2020 – strategy. After significant pressure from the Council, the Commission has announced that they will present a proposal for a 7th Environmental Programme in the fall of 2012.

Furthermore ministers will agree on council conclusions on the mandate for the 11th meeting under the Convention for Biodiversity (CBD), taking place in October in Hyderabad, India. The mandate will make it possible for the EU to engage constructively in the discussions with the developing countries in regards to the financing of global biodiversity.

The ministers will also debate key issues of the Commissions recent proposal for common accounting rules for greenhouse gas emission from forestry and land use in the EU. Currently, there is no EU accounting framework in place beyond 2012.

“This is an important first step in strengthening the foundation for climate friendly conduct in the forestry and land use sectors. In this way, we encourage that all sectors in the EU contribute to the fights against climate change” says Minister for Climate, Energy and Building Martin Lidegaard.
During the informal ministerial luncheon, ministers will also discuss climate finance. The question of post-2012 climate finance to developing countries will be a key issue at the COP18 climate negotiations in Doha in November. At the same time climate finance is also key to secure the EU's overall climate priorities as financing of relatively cheap CO2 reductions in developing countries can contribute to the global efforts to combat climate change.


Press Officer Mette Thorn, Ministry of the Environment
Tel: +45 72 54 60 32 / +45 25 61 71 70, email: 

Press Officer Claus Kaae-Nielsen, Ministry of Climate, Energy and Building
Tel: + 45 41 72 90 11, email:


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