The European Environmental Bureau

Project Name

European Environmental Bureau

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  • Granted

    £600,000

  • Year

    2024-25

  • Location

    Europe-wide

Overview

The European Environmental Bureau (EEB) is the largest network of environmental citizens’ organisations in Europe and the only one that works on such a broad range of issues. They currently consist of over 180 member organisations in 40 countries, including a growing number of networks, and works to promote our members’ demands at European and global level.

They are a founding member of the Green10, a coalition of ten of the largest environmental organisations and networks active on the European level. The EEB is identified as the number 1 of the ten most influential interest groups in Brussels. The EEB’s role in shaping EU environmental and climate laws for the past 49 years has been instrumental.

The EEB collaborates with its members through working groups to develop strategies, publish policy recommendations, promote member demands at the EU level as well as supporting their members to seek policy change domestically. They work across themes including climate change, biodiversity and toxic pollution, and cross-cutting areas including industry, agriculture and environmental justice. When the membership of its members is combined, the EEB represents over 20 million European citizens in its work.

They have been working on EU nature policy for several decades with positive results. Of particular relevance for this project, the EEB was instrumental in defending the Nature Directives during the then EU president, Jean-Claude Juncker, deregulation drive which threatened to weaken them. As the result of the NGO advocacy and communication activities EU Nature Directives were declared to be ‘fit for purpose’ providing a new momentum for their implementation and integration of nature conservation into sectoral policies. This work was notably done within the frame of the EEB ‘nature alert campaign’.

The EEB has also been deeply engaged in the European Green Deal (a set of policy initiatives to support the EU in addressing the ecological and climate crises) and has been found to be the most effective NGO in helping implement it. The EEB proposed a European Green Deal before it became a priority commitment of the Commission in 2019. It is widely recognised to have been one of the leading organisations setting the ambitions and agenda for many of the legislative proposals of the Green Deal.

The ERF grant is specifically to support EEB in taking coordinated action across its membership, to oppose the watering down of the legal protection for wolves in Europe. The EU is a signatory to various international conservation agreements and treaties. The measures being put forward by the EU will likely become an existential threat to the Habitats Directive. Weakening protections for wolves raises concerns among the international community about the EU’s commitment to biodiversity conservation, as other protections for other species could be next to be downgraded.

As such, this grant is to help maintain the EU’s nature legislation, and approach of using science-based approach lawmaking. There is also a need to continue defending the EU nature laws as the key tools to tackle interrelated biodiversity, climate and pollution crises and ensure synergies with the new regulations, such as the forthcoming Nature Restoration Law.