The European Comission says Italy and Malta could face legal sanctions over F-Gas Regulation
The European Commission has announced that Italy and Malta could face legal action over their continued failure to implement the European Union F-gas Regulation, which controls emissions of fluorinated greenhouse gases in Europe.
On the recommendation of Connie Hedegaard, EU Commissioner for Climate Action, the Commission is sending a ‘reasoned opinion’ to both countries, formally requesting they take action to ensure full compliance with the F-Gas Regulation.
In the absence of a satisfactory response within two months, the Commission says it may refer the cases to the European Court of Justice.
Natasha Hurley, Global Environment Campaigner with the London-based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), said: “Italy and Malta have turned a blind eye to key aspects of the F-gas Regulation and we congratulate the Commission on taking this action.”
“However, it is clear that even perfect implementation of the Regulation will not sufficiently reduce F-gas emissions. A drastic overhaul is needed.”
The European Commission is in the process of reviewing the F-gas Regulation.
An independent study commissioned as part of the review highlighted numerous shortcomings, including a chronic lack of implementation and enforcement across the EU.
Analysis conducted by EIA shows that the current legislation has allowed emissions of HFCs, the most common type of F-gases in use in the EU, to rise by 28 per cent since it was introduced.
EIA is calling for a phase-out of most of HFCs by 2020.