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Crosscutting Issues

Facts and figures

The European Pollutant Release and Transfer Register (E-PRTR) contains data reported annually by more than 30,000 industrial facilities.


In 2015 there were 44,711 products and services, comprised by 2031 licences, that had been awarded the EU Ecolabel.


The Seveso Directive applies to > 10,000 industrial establishments in the EU where dangerous substances are used or stored in large quantities, mainly in the chemical, petrochemical, logistics and metal refining sectors.


The average costs for developers for carrying out an environmental impact assessment are estimated at 1 per cent of the total project cost.

(SWD(2012) 355 final)

Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)


Adequate assessment of expected environmental impacts is a prerequisite for making well-founded decisions on activities that may significantly affect the environment. The legal framework concerning environmental impact assessment (EIA) comprises not only the actual assessment as such, but also the procedure through which an assessment is produced, including consultation with the parties concerned.

At the international level, a requirement to carry out EIAs for certain projects can be found in the 1991 Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (the Espoo Convention).1 In 2003 the Convention was supplemented by a Protocol on Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) which entered into force in 2010.2 The Protocol requires its Parties to assess the

  • 1 (Espoo, 25 February 1991) 1989 UNTS 309.
  • 2 Protocol on Strategic Environmental Assessment to the Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (the SEA Protocol) (Kiev, 21 May 2003) UN Doc ECE/ MP.EIA/2003/2.

EU Environmental Law and Policy. David Langlet and Said Mahmoudi. © David Langlet and Said Mahmoudi 2016. Published 2016 by Oxford University Press.

environmental consequences of certain official draft plans and programmes. The EU is party to both instruments.

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