Last Friday the European Parliament adopted in plenary the report of Jo Leinen on the future EU environment action programme which sets the framework for EU environment policy. The report calls for the main focus to be on improving the implementation of existing environment policies, integration of environment policy with other policies and better coherence. The importance of the international dimension of EU environment policy is also highlighted.

Concerning animal welfare, the report makes reference to the need to consider it in the framework of sustainable consumption and production, by calling “for the development of product policy addressing the whole product lifecycle and including animal welfare friendly methods of production”. It also highlights the need to reduce the use of animals in safety testing under paragraph 46, which reads as follows:

Considers that full regard should be paid to the methods used for the risk assessment of chemicals, prioritising alternatives to animal tests; considers also that the 7th EAP should provid
e for the adoption of an EU-wide strategy to reduce the number of animals used in safety testing, while guaranteeing a high quality of life for humans and animals in the EU;”

The European Commission is currently carrying out an impact assessment and preparing its proposal for the 7th EAP, which should be adopted end of 2012. As part of the impact assessment, an Internet consultation has been launched and will end on 1st June.

Link to the text of the report (pp.74-84 of text adopted on Friday): click here

Link to consultation: click here

The Informal Environment Council meeting in Horsens from 18-20 April also adopted Presidency conclusions on the future of the 7th EAP which are available here


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