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Victims of breast implants scandal fight for compensation - Need for EU to better protect with Collective Redress
Criminal fraud proceedings begin today in France following last year’s breast implants scandal which affected 400,000 victims globally and 100,000 in Europe.

Parliament renders ETS impotent
The European Renewable Energy Council (EREC) has criticised the decision by the European Parliament to reject a proposal to reform the EU’s Emissions Trading System (ETS). The proposal sought to send a signal of confidence on the future of the carbon price by ‘back-loading’ or postponing emissions allowances from 2013-2015 until later in phase three of the ETS, which ends in 2020.

New report shows urgent need to eliminate bee-killer pesticides in Europe
Greenpeace has released a comprehensive scientific review of the factors that put pollinators and agriculture in Europe at risk. The study highlights the ecological and economic importance of healthy bee populations and stresses the urgent need for the elimination of bee-harming pesticides from agriculture. Such elimination would be a crucial and effective first step to protect the health of bee populations and to safeguard their pollination value that is vital for the ecosystem and food production in Europe.

EU climate and energy plans for 2030 dangerously inadequate
EU officials today published details of their planned approach to climate and energy policy until 2030. Friends of the Earth Europe has described the plans as 'dangerously inadequate' and particularly criticised the lack of legally binding targets to encourage more energy from renewables and more energy savings.

European auto industry calls for 'real and effective' elimination of non-tariff barriers during trade negotiations with Japan
The European Union and Japan yesterday officially launched negotiations for a free trade agreement (FTA).

Lawsuit filed against EU authorisation of genetically engineered soybeans
Environmental organisations and scientists jointly bring the case to the European Court of Justice

European Parliament calls on the Commission to assess a binding 2030 renewable energy target
The Industry, Transport, Research and Energy (ITRE) Committee of the European Parliament has adopted the Reul report today, which calls on the European Commission to assess a mandatory 2030 renewable energy target.

Towards a Europe-wide database of accidents and injuries
A broad coalition of European organisations has come together to call on the European Commission to propose setting up a Pan-European Accident and Injury Data System. They are convinced that such a system would contribute to fewer accidents and injuries. Moreover, the cost of creating such a system would be more than offset by reductions in health care costs.

MEPs keep alive greener farming
Members of the European Parliament today voted to continue the process of 'greening' European agriculture. However the changes don't go far enough, says Friends of the Earth Europe which is calling for much stronger measures to protect the environment and the majority of small farmers.

EU updates law on air passengers' rights
A major update of EU regulation on the rights of passengers and obligations of airlines when flights are cancelled or face long delays has been launched today (March 13).

Business confidence declines further as recession spreads, survey finds
European SMEs’ confidence declined for the fourth semester in a row as a downturn due to a sluggish internal demand is feeding through all Member States, according to a survey conducted by UEAPME, the European craft and SME employers’ organisation, and its members.

Hidden impacts of Europe's appetite for land
Europe must urgently tackle its over-use of the world’s land, finds a new report from Friends of the Earth Europe, released today.

Lobby register review: it's now or never for mandatory transparency
The review of the Commission and Parliament's Joint Transparency Register) – foreseen to take place two years after its launch – is already underway. ALTER-EU believes this is an unmissable opportunity to make the voluntary lobby register mandatory, with improved disclosure requirements.

Capital requirements: SMEs welcome deal to transpose "Basel III" rules in the EU
UEAPME, the European craft and SME employers' organisation, warmly welcomed the agreement reached between the EU institutions last night on the implementation in the Union of the "Basel III" rules on capital requirements.

Data protection: SMEs welcome vote at ITRE Committee, urge LIBE to follow
UEAPME, the European craft and SME employers’ organisation, welcomed today’s vote at the European Parliament’s Industry Committee (ITRE) on the revised data protection regulation.

MEPs vote on emissions trading reform – Friends Of The Earth Europe comment
Members of the European Parliament's environment committee voted today in favour of a proposal to delay the introduction of permits into the EU Emissions Trading System.

Data protection: it’s not about Facebook, it’s about us, SMEs tell Parliament
UEAPME speaks at SME Intergroup; warns against extending to all SMEs the obligation to nominate a data protection officer

Aluminium, cotton and lithium needlessly wasted, new report shows
Europe is failing to manage its resources sustainably, unnecessarily sending valuable materials to incineration and landfill, according to a report published today (Thursday February 14) by Friends of the Earth Europe.

Major overhaul of EU product safety rules
The European Union is to update a landmark consumer law on the safety of non-food products sold within Europe. The General Product Safety Directive (GPSD) governs safety standards to prevent for example injuries from defective products and limit exposure to hazardous chemicals.

ACEA welcomes President Obama’s intention to launch EU-US Free Trade Negotiations
Speaking in the United States’ Congress at his annual State of the Union address last night, President Barack Obama gave a clear signal that he intends to reinforce ties between the US and the EU. His announcement of the launch of talks on a “comprehensive” Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership with the European Union is an important step in building a larger, freer and fairer market for both European and American goods and services.

Only 1 out of 4 EU citizens are aware of 112 as the European emergency number
Only 1 out of 4 citizens are aware of 112 as the emergency number to dial all over the European Union.

EU parliament votes to overhaul fisheries policy
A historic vote in the European Parliament in Strasbourg today has brought the prospect of a fast recovery of Europe’s fish stocks one step closer, according to Greenpeace.

Online gaming and betting: EGBA welcomes extension of revised anti-money laundering directive to all gambling services
EU online gambling operators salute the European Commission’s updated rules (see link) on anti-money laundering. The new rules, which we hope will bring a greater level of consistency between national rules, confirm that online gambling is a clear cross-border economic activity covered by a growing number of EU-harmonised legislation.

EU’s snail pace to tackling supply chain abuse
Acknowledging the abusive buying practices which are widely applied in European grocery supply chains, the European Commission has just launched its European Retail Action Plan and a Green Paper on unfair trading practices.

Commission acts on bee-killing pesticides but stops short of complete ban
The European Commission will today ask EU member state representatives to consider imposing restrictions on certain pesticides because of their harmful effects on bees. Greenpeace welcomes the move by the Commission, which follows the publication of several scientific studies linking the use of neonicotinoid pesticides to the disappearance of bees.