EU acquis in the Chapter Environment and Climate Change contains over 200 legal acts in 10 areas:
1) horisontal legislation,
2) water quality,
3) air quality,
4) waste management,
5) nature protection,
6) control of industrial pollution and risk management,
9) civil protection and
10) climate change.
When was the chapter opened?
Negotiations within the Chapter 27 has been opened on the Intergovernmental Conference that was held on 10 December 2018 in Brussels.
Opening and interim benchmarks?
Montenegro fulfilled the opening benchmark within the Chapter 27 by adopting National Strategy with Action Plan for Transposition, Implementation and Enforcement of the EU acquis on Environment and Climate Change with Action plan for the period 2016-2020 (NEAS) on 28 July 2016.
European Union Common Position for Chapter 27 – Environment and climate change defines 8 closing benchmarks that need to be fulfilled in next period in order to achieve internal readiness for closing of the chapter:
1) Montenegro continues to align with the horizontal Directives and demonstrates that it will be fully prepared to ensure their effective implementation and enforcement at the date of accession.
2) On air quality, Montenegro fully aligns with the revised Directive on the reduction of national emissions of certain atmospheric pollutants (NEC Directive 2016/2284/EU). Montenegro presents an analysis of cost-effective emission control strategies for 2020 and 2030, which shall serve as a basis for final agreement between the EU and Montenegro on its reduction obligations under the NEC Directive. Montenegro reports on an annual basis its emissions, in line with the Directive and the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution and develops a National Air Pollution Control Programme. Furthermore, Montenegro enhances the preparation for the implementation of the acquis in this area, by regularly taking measures to reduce national air pollution, particularly in zones where EU limit values for air quality are exceeded, and by developing or updating air quality plans, as envisaged by the Directive on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe (Directive 2008/50/EC).
3) Montenegro decides on its waste management system and dedicates appropriate funding to infrastructure investments, in line with relevant EU legislation, including the waste hierarchy. Montenegro establishes waste prevention programmes, prepares waste management plans (WMP), and adopts measures for the separate collection of waste for paper, metal, plastic and glass.
4) Montenegro makes significant progress on acquis alignment in the water sector, including drinking water legislation, and Directive 2008/56/EC establishing a framework for Community action in the field of marine environmental policy. Montenegro designates the competent drinking water authorities and develops river basin management plans for each river basin district lying entirely within its territory, including the portions of international river basin districts falling within its territory.
5) In the area of nature protection, Montenegro submits the list of proposed Natura 2000 sites, sufficiently covering the habitat types and species in line with the requirements of the Birds and Habitats directives, to the Commission. Montenegro demonstrates the capacity to manage the Natura 2000 network, including by affording the Ulcinj Salina the appropriate protection status and effectively implementing the necessary conservation measures leading to the improvement of its conservation status.
6) Montenegro continues its alignment with the acquis in the chemicals, noise and civil protection sectors, and demonstrates that it will be fully prepared to ensure the implementation and enforcement of the EU requirements at the date of accession.
7) On climate change, Montenegro continues its alignment with the acquis, notably by adopting legislation on the functioning of the European Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), in line with the EU ETS Directive 2003/87/EC and its successive amendments. Montenegro further aligns with relevant secondary legislation on monitoring and reporting, accreditation and verification, the Union Registry, free allocation, and auctioning. Montenegro makes sure that the appropriate framework is in place to implement the EU ETS in its entirety regarding the monitoring, reporting, and verification of greenhouse gas emissions.
8) Montenegro, in line with the Action Plan for the transposition, implementation and enforcement of the EU acquis on environment and climate change, significantly enhances the capacity of the administrative bodies at all levels, including inspection services, further improves coordination of work and demonstrates that all appropriate administrative structures and adequate training will be in place in good time before accession to enable implementation and enforcement of the acquis in all sectors of this chapter.
What are the activities in the coming period?
The preparation of the Action plan for the fullfilment of the closing benchmark within the Chapter 27 is ongoing.
Also, work on transposition of the EU acquis in the field of environment and climate change, strengthening of capacities at national and local level for the implementation of regulations in this field, implementation of projects that will contribute to the improvement of the environment and health of citizens in the future, will continue. in line with EU standards.
Institutions/organizations participating in the negotiation group?
Member of Negotiating Group and Chief of the Working Group for the Chapter 27 is coming from the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism, while the contact person for Chapter 27 is coming from the Office for European Integartion.
Apart from the representatives of the Ministry of Sustainable Developemnt and Tourism, members of the Working Group are members of following institutions and organisations: Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Interior, Nature and environment protection agency, Administration for Inspection, Union of municipalities, Center for ecotoxicological researches Ltd, Union of employers of Montenegro, Montenegro busines alliance, Union of free trade syndicates of Montenegro, University of Montenegro, University Mediteran, University Donja Gorica, NGO Sjeverna zemlja, NGO Green Home, NGO Zeleno srce and NGO PRONA Fondation for science promotion.
What is the benefit for Montenegro of this chapter?
The transposition and implementation of the EU acquis in the field of environment and climate change contributes to the protection and improvement of the state of the key natural resources and directly affects the health and quality of life of Montenegrin citizens.
By fulfilling our obligations within Chapter 27, we contribute to the quality of air, water, an adequate waste and wastewater management system, wildlife protection, emergency management and rescue and emergency response, the requirements that plants must meet in order to receive an IPPC permit; adequate use of chemicals, permitted levels of environmental noise and activities that reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions etc.