CHAPTER 27 – ENVIRONMENT

CHAPTER 27 – ENVIRONMENT

The environmentall policy of the EU 35aims to promote sustainable development and topreserve the environment for the present and future generations. Direct benefits of this policy are of a general nature: better health of the population, conservation of natural resources, competitive economy, better quality of living. The fight against global climate change is the important part of the EU policy.

The EU environmental policy is based on the principles of preventive action (before the occurrence of a damage, or a pollution), the “Polluter Pays” principle (whenever it is possible, the environmental protection costs should be borne by the private or natural person who threatens the environment, not by the society as a whole), fighting against environmental degradation at the very source of pollution (where it is more simple and economical to remove the effects of pollution), common responsibilitybetween the EU and the member states (because the competence for this area is divided between the EU and the member states) and inclusion of environmental protection into other policies of the EU (such as agriculture, transport, energetics).

The EU environmental regulations are very extensive and make approximately one third of the total number of EU regulations. These regulations cover the area of environmental protection horizontally (evaluation of impact on the environment, access to information, public participation), namely through the following sectors: air quality, waste management, water quality, nature protection, control of industrial pollution and risk management, chemicals, climate changes, noise protection and civil protection.

Transposition of EU legislation into the national legal system is only the first step in the process of adaptation to EU standards. The EU environmental policy also includes an adequate implementation and enforcement of regulations – at the national level, as well as at the local one. Significant investments are necessary, due to administrative costs, investments into infrastructure, as well as maintenance of plants. The biggest expense in the process of adoption of EU standards is expected in the water sector, followed by the waste sector and the industrial pollution sector. A significant portion of the costs to achieve EU standards will be financed through the EU funds (National Environmental Approximation Strategy of the Republic of Serbia) 36 .

Taking into account the experience from the previous EU enlargements, it is likely that, as the part of the negotiations, Serbia will ask for the EU approval of transitional periods for implementation and enforcement of EU standards in this area.

The Institutions Participating in the Negotiating Group on Environment

The Chair of the Negotiating Group on Environment is the State Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment. The Deputy Chair, Secretary and Deputy Secretary are representatives of the same Ministry. The other members of the Negotiating Group are the representatives of the following State institutions: Ministry of Finance; Ministry of Economy; Ministry of Energy and Mining; Ministry of Construction, Transport and Infrastructure; Ministry of Health; Ministry of Interior; Ministry of Justice; Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development; Serbian Geodetic Authority; Civil Aviation Directorate of the Republic of Serbia; Transport Safety Agency; Republic Hydrometeorological Service; Serbian Statistics Office; Serbian Geodetic Authority; Serbian Standardisation Institute; Serbian Nature
Protection Office; Serbian Secretariat for Legislation; Civil Society Cooperation Office and Serbian European Integration Office. The same as in the case of other negotiating groups, the Chair of the NG 27 is entitled, if necessary, to invite the representatives of other organizations to participate in the work of the Negotiating Group.

What is the benefit and effect for Serbia?

The aim is to establish a sustainable evironmental protection system in Serbia, as well as a significant involvement of this policy in other sectors. The preconditions for better health, better quality of life of citizens and a competitive economy are provided in this way. In addition, the negotiations should provide a a sufficiently long transitional period so that the infrastructure and plants in Serbia would be adapted to high EU standards.

What is the benefit and effect for Serbia??

The aim is to establish a sustainable evironmental protection system in Serbia, as well as a significant involvement of this policy in other sectors. The preconditions for better health, better quality of life of citizens and a competitive economy are provided in this way. In addition, the negotiations should provide a a sufficiently long transitional period so that the infrastructure and plants in Serbia would be adapted to high EU standards.

38 http://eurlex.europa.eu/summary/chapter/environment.html?root_default=SUM_1_CODED%3D20&locale=en
39 http://www.zzps.rs/novo/kontent/stranicy/propisi_strategije/strategija_aproksimacije.pdf