EU natural law – Gewessler: I don’t need Totschnig’s approval


Does Environment Minister Leonore Gewessler (Greens) dare to go it alone with the EU renaturation law? The politician said on Friday that it was a “long-standing and lived practice” that the responsible ministers would decide.

“I don’t see any reason why we should do things differently here. What binds me is the state’s statement.” This could now crumble. After a joint veto, the governments of Carinthia and Vienna have called for regulation that is ‘getting closer’. “Does he still support the previous statement, that is the crux of the matter,” the Environment Minister said on Friday in reference to Vienna Mayor Michael Ludwig (SPÖ).

Headwind from ÖVP
While some attorneys affirm that Gewessler does not need approval from other departments, others object. The green light from Agriculture Minister Norbert Totschnig, Finance Minister Magnus Brunner and Europe Minister Karoline Edtstadler (all ÖVP) could be necessary. The ÖVP rejects the EU renaturation law and only repeated this on Thursday. Counterarguments include overregulation and rising food prices.

“If Agriculture Minister Totschnig in Brussels can weaken environmental protection standards in agricultural policy and in the common agricultural policy without my consent, then the reverse must also be possible,” Gewessler said.

EU Environment Council on 17 June
EU legislation stipulates that in the future more forests will be reforested, heathlands re-watered and rivers restored to their natural state (see video above). After long negotiations, it was adopted in a weaker form in the EU Parliament. However, at the end of March, the final approval of the law by the Environment Ministers was postponed at short notice. The next EU Environment Council will take place on June 17 in Luxembourg.

Source: Krone


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