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European Commission publishes Resource Efficiency Roadmap

A plan unveiled by the European Commission to tackle Europe's dependency on imported resources doesn't go far enough to cut waste and stop over-consumption of the world's energy, water, land and materials, says Friends of the Earth.

20th September 2011

Press release


European Commission publishes Resource Efficiency Roadmap

20 September 2011

A plan unveiled by the European Commission today (20 September 2011) to tackle Europe's dependency on imported resources doesn't go far enough to cut waste and stop over-consumption of the world's energy, water, land and materials, says Friends of the Earth.

The Resource Efficiency Roadmap calls for EU countries to make more efficient use of the world's finite natural resources to ensure we meet the needs of a growing global population.

But Friends of the Earth says the plan is too vague and lacks urgent measures to reduce Europe's over-consumption of energy, water and land - which is wrecking habitats, increasing climate-changing emissions and affecting some of the world's poorest people.

Friends of the Earth's resource use campaigner Julian Kirby said:

"From burgers to mobile phones, Europe's wasteful economies leave us perilously over-dependent on imported materials, jeopardising business and putting pressure on wildlife, the climate and the world's poorest people.

"Policymakers are right to commit to using resources more wisely and ensuring nearly nothing is wasted - but their plans still lack the details and deadlines needed to protect both our economy and the environment.

"The EU should end its drive for rainforest-wrecking biofuels, support planet-friendly farming practices and ensure our products are built to last.

"With Wales outstripping English recycling rates and Brussels aiming for a genuinely zero-waste economy, David Cameron must update the disastrous Waste Review with an ambitious plan to cut waste, boost recycling and make British manufacturing more efficient".

ENDS

Notes to editors

The Resource Efficiency Roadmap is available to download.
Friends of the Earth says the 'resource productivity indicator' in the current Roadmap only considers the weight of material resources - ignoring land, water and carbon footprints and their subsequent social and environmental impacts. The charity wants the European Commission to monitor Europe's use of resources more thoroughly using agreed 'indicators' for energy, water, land and materials.
Friends of the Earth says it is unacceptable that the European Commission plans to "take into account" land use by EU countries from 2020 (but not before) - and that it won't stop further land grabs by European companies before 2050. The charity says the EU must not pass this opportunity to dramatically reduce its demand for land in poor countries and that it should scrap unsustainable biofuel targets that have been shown to do nothing to tackle climate change.
Friends of the Earth says England lags behind Wales when it comes to recycling, keeping us hooked on imports of expensive and increasingly scarce resources. The green campaigning charity is calling on David Cameron to halve household 'black bag waste' by 2020.
Friends of the Earth believes the environment is for everyone. We want a healthy planet and a good quality of life for all those who live on it. We inspire people to act together for a thriving environment. More than 90 per cent of our income comes from individuals so we rely on donations to continue our vital work. For further information visit www.foe.co.uk

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If you're a journalist looking for press information please contact the Friends of the Earth media team on 020 7566 1649.

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