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Analysis

  • The Environment Agency has not been fair in its approach to the reforms, says EEF. Photograph: Environment Agency

    Environment Agency faces call to save OPRA

    The Environment Agency’s plans to reform charges and move to ‘performance-based regulation’ has raised industry’s hackles

  • BirdLife Europe's EU bioenergy policy officer Sini Eräjää,

    Sini Eräjää, EU bioenergy policy officer at BirdLife Europe, shares her insights FREE

  • Oxford economist Dieter Helm has called for UK energy overhaul. Photograph: Alphaspirit/123RF

    Carbon and energy needs major revolution

    Use universal carbon tax, regulatory reform and end low-carbon auctions to overhaul the energy system, says Helm review  

  • Infographic icon

    Industry emissions continue steady decline

    The eighth year of emissions data under the Pollutant Release and Transfer Register was released in September, showing continuing progress in reducing a wide range of air pollutants and greenhouse gases in 2015

  • The revised Renewable Energy Directive will have stricker rules on sourcing wood biomass. Photograph: Piotr Krzeslak/123RF

    Biomass fuels debate on sustainability

    Bioenergy has dominated the EU’s agenda as a suitable renewable energy source for years with takers in the transport, heating and electricity generation sector, but is all this about to change for the UK? James Parsons investigates

  • River Tamar in Devon has a legacy of contamination, particularly from its mining past. Photograph: Helen Hotson/Alamy Stock Photo

    Rise of the zombie pollutants

    Climate change is stirring up historic contaminated sediments from England’s rivers and little is being done to clean them up, as Rachel Salvidge discovers

  • The European Commission has taken action against the UK over air pollution several times. Photograph: 123RF

    The political environment

    What will Brexit mean for the enforcement of environmental law as the UK prepares to strike out on its own? Tom Reeve investigates what could replace the European Commission as the ultimate watchdog

  • Portrait of Henry VIII by Hans Holbein the Younger. Photograph: Google Art Project

    Should we be afraid of Henry VIII powers?

    The inclusion of Henry VIII powers in the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill has raised fears that ministers will use them to downgrade environmental protections

  • Details on targeting carbon prices are due to be announced in Autumn 2017 budget. Photograph: David Neale/geograph.org.uk

    CGS: Power sector to get carbon price

    Carbon capture and storage, nuclear and offshore wind has been championed in the power sector with a future carbon price on the table

  • Caroline Haywood from legal firm ClientEarth

    Insider Insight: Caroline Haywood

    Caroline Haywood, Law and Policy advisor on climate and forests at ClientEarth shares her insights

Comment

  • Richard Macrory, emeritus professor of environmental law, University College London

    The precautionary principle and genetically modified food

    Richard Macrory: The European court’s decision to rein in the application of the precautionary principle to national bans on GMOs shows the careful approach taken by the institution so feared by Brexiters

  • Andrew C Singer, senior scientist, Natural Environment Research Council’s Centre for Ecology & Hydrology

    Wastewater treatment is a seeping health timebomb

    Andrew C Singer: In addition to dangerous chemicals and illicit drugs ending up in our rivers through sewage treatment, the greatest danger could come from the presence of antimicrobials

  • James Parsons, writer, ENDS Report

    Shine or grime: government’s clean strategy revealed

    The Clean Growth Strategy resurrects an enthusiasm for decarbonisation not seen since David Cameron’s 2010 pledge to be the greenest government ever, but will it live up to expectations?

  • Nick Robins, co-director, UN Environment’s Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System

    Green finance will make the system fit for purpose

    Nick Robins: Investment funds that adhere to environmental, social and governance standards are starting to be recognised as the building blocks for a sustainable and prosperous economy

  • Richard Macrory, emeritus professor of environmental law, University College London

    Courts will hesitate to push EU air quality boundaries

    Richard Macrory: The legal system is ever ready to put pressure on government to meet air quality limits but it has yet to be seen how far the courts will go to exercise their powers to call-in plans

  • Nathan Richardson, senior policy officer, RSPB

    A system that rewards law breakers is in need of reform

    Nathan Richardson: We all want to reduce pollution but asking customers to pay water companies for breaking the law less often is not the way to go about it. Nor is hoping for less flood-inducing weather

  • Paul Hatchwell, climate and energy editor, ENDS Report

    Keeping up standards

    One specific area of concern to business that epitomises the need for urgent restaffing at depleted departments such as BEIS and DEFRA is that of EU product standards

  • Linda Crichton, head of resource management, WRAP

    Find out what stops people recycling to trigger change

    Linda Crichton: Dedicated research has been helping local councils tailor their recycling communications to drive behavioural change for over a decade. It is now time to apply this tactic to food waste

  • Niche substances are particularly at risk of being 'orphaned' under REACH – Susanne Baker, techUK

    Supply fears still loom large as REACH deadline nears

    Susanne Baker: Users of niche chemicals are particularly vulnerable to supply risks when the final round of REACH registrations ends next May. Some flexibility may be needed to assess how complex supply chains are evaluated

  • 'We must move in the direction of one-planet living, if we are to continue to prosper' – Terry A'Hearn, chief executive, SEPA

    A new focus to guide firms towards resource efficiency

    Terry A'Hearn: Novel partnerships, disruptive business models and new ways of thinking are needed to achieve sustainability and stop using more resources than one planet can provide

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