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Environment Council

Volume 481: debated on Tuesday 21 October 2008

My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change and I will represent the UK at the Environment Council in Luxembourg on 20 and 21 October.

At this Council, the French presidency will hold a policy debate on the preparation for the 14th Conference of the Parties (COP 14) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the fourth meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP 4) to be held in Poznan on 1 to 12 December 2008. Ministers are then due to adopt Council conclusions, which will emphasise our ambitions for Copenhagen and Poznan, covering mitigation action in developed and developing countries, adaptation, technology and funding and investment. The European Commission will also present its communication on deforestation.

There will be a progress report by the presidency on the climate-energy legislative package. Ministers will also discuss the key aspects of the package over lunch.

The presidency will hold a policy debate on genetically modified organisms, and a policy debate for public deliberation on a proposal for a regulation concerning trade in seal products.

Ministers are due to adopt Council conclusions following a policy debate on the sustainable consumption and production (SCP) and sustainable industrial policy (SIP) action plan. The policy debate is likely to focus on next steps for delivering the plan, eco-labelling, lifestyles and behaviour, and carbon content display for products. The conclusions, which were also considered by the Competitiveness Council on 25 September, are due to welcome the SCP-SIP action plan and identify some next steps.

Ministers are also due to adopt the annex to the Euro-Mediterranean declaration on water (the ‘Barcelona process’).

Under ‘any other business’, the presidency will update the Council on: the common agriculture policy (CAP) health check; the EU-Africa climate meeting due to be held in Algiers on 20 November 2008; the Reunion Conference on Europe’s overseas areas faced with climate change and loss of biodiversity; the proposal for a regulation setting emission performance standards for new passenger cars (C02 from cars); GMES (global monitoring for environment and security) services; and a proposal for a soils directive.

Under ‘any other business’, the presidency and the European Commission will also present information on proposals for: substances that deplete the ozone layer; industrial emissions (integrated pollution prevention and control); the outcome of the conference on soil and climate change held in Brussels on 12 June this year; and a Commission communication and legislative proposal to prevent marketing in the EU of unlawfully harvested timber and timber products.