THE NETHERLANDS. The main challenges facing the Netherlands in implementing EU environmental standards concern air and water quality, according to a new report by the European Commission.
‘Improving water quality, in particular regarding nutrients concentrations in surface water,’ and ‘improving air quality, in particular the concentrations of nitrogen dioxide and ozone to prevent premature deaths,’ top the list of concerns, the report said.
The report points out that Rotterdam, Amsterdam and The Hague are among the 12 worst performing metropolitan areas in Europe in terms of traffic congestion. ‘Overall, the Netherlands is the second worst in the EU with regard to the economic costs caused by traffic congestion, which causes high levels of air pollution,’ the report said.
In addition, the Netherlands needs to do more to improve its national nature networks ‘to reduce habitat fragmentation and biodiversity loss,’ the report said.
Nevertheless, the Netherlands, the report says, is a leader in environmental implementation and could share its successes more widely with other EU countries. It singles out the ‘Green Deals’ signed by government and stakeholders to overcome obstacles for green growth as an EU good practice.
It also praises the way green thinking is becoming more mainstream in the financial sector, and refers to the sustainable investment policy adopted by civil service pension fund ABP.
The report on the Netherlands is one of 28 country reports published by Brussels to provide a comprehensive overview of how EU environmental policies and laws are applied on the ground.
This article appeared first on dutchnews.nl.
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