Towards sustainable development: A blueprint from Brussels

The European Commission's proposals for the EC's fifth Environment Action Programme will be published shortly. Although it is clear that legislative proposals will continue to emerge in plenty from Brussels, market mechanisms and information are to be used alongside regulation to foster wider participation in environmental protection. New institutions are also to be created at Community level in an effort to achieve fuller implementation of environmental laws. But the Commission has failed to show how it will integrate environmental considerations into other EC policies and development funds.

The EC's Environment Action Programmes, which map out a strategy for its environmental policy and give early warning of the European Commission's legislative intentions on specific issues, come up for renewal every five years or so. The present Programme, the fourth, ends in 1992.

Environment's compartments
Although the Programmes were expanded in ambition and scope after the first was adopted in 1973, all four had one important

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