The European Commission's Environment Directorate-General in carrying
out a hasty consultation: Assessing the actions to be undertaken as part
of the Thematic Strategy on the Sustainable Use of Natural Resources
The consultation runs from 6 December 2004 until 30 January 2005
Aim of the Consultation
Commission departments are currently drafting a Thematic Strategy on
the sustainable use of natural resources. This Strategy, which is one of
seven being produced following the 6th Environmental Action Programme,
will aim to reduce the environmental impacts of using natural resources,
where natural resources are raw materials such as minerals and biomass,
environmental media such as air, water and soil, flow resources such as
wind, geothermal, tidal and solar energy and space (land area).
This consultation will build on and focus the results of the stakeholder
consultations following the Commission's 2003 Communication, Towards a
thematic strategy on the sustainable use of natural resources.
It seeks to elicit relevant information and opinions from stakeholders on
particular measures being considered for inclusion in the final Strategy.
The information submitted will feed into the Extended Impact Assessment
currently being prepared by Commission departments and which will guide
the final Strategy, which should be adopted in summer 2005.
The previous consultation
The 2003 Commission consultation document set out the aim of
developing 'a framework and measures that allow resources to be used in
a sustainable way without further harming the environment, while achieving
the objectives of the Lisbon Strategy' and outlined three broad areas in
which it considered that further action was necessary. These were: 1.
filling the gaps in our knowledge about the interaction between resource
use and environmental impact under different environmental and g
eographic conditions 2. improving the assessment of policies so that
better informed decisions can be taken on a sound understanding of their
environmental, economic and social impacts 3. based on the results
generated by the first two elements, strengthening the integration of
resource-related environmental issues into other policies.
This consultation document also led to the establishment of an Advisory
Forum and two Working Groups. Each working group was asked to
produce a report and these were completed on 1 October 2004.
The results of these working groups have been taken account of in
preparing this consultation, as have statements from the European
Parliament and Council.
Guidance for responding to the questionnaire
There is a lengthy consultation questionnaire available on line at:
The reports referred to above are:
Two Working Groups have been active during the stakeholder consultation
process. Their final reports are here:
Final report Working Group 1 (pdf ~1,5Mb)
Final report Working Group 2 (pdf ~464K)