New training course: EU accession and integration of the EU acquis within the environmental area in cooperation with the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency

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Starting on 14 March, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency in cooperation with EIPA are offering for the Western Balkan region (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo*, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Albania) free of charge online training course, focusing on the EU accession and integration of the EU acquis within the environmental area. Senior lecturers from EIPA Igor Dizdarevic, Petra Jeney, Wolfgang Koeth, Sabina Lange and EIPA’s external expert Ralf Jülich will provide their top notch expertise for each of the four modules of the course.

Structure of the course

This course will be divided into four modules. The first module will provide the participants with a comprehensive overview of the functioning of the EU, both from the perspective of the institutional framework and the legal architecture of the EU. The institutional aspect will aim at clearly presenting the different institutions, bodies and agencies of the EU and specifying their roles, as well as their interaction with the authorities of Member States and consequently also the authorities of a candidate country. The legal perspective will focus on explaining the EU norms and acts, namely: primary law (treaties), secondary law (legislative acts and acts of executive nature) and to a certain extent non-binding acts (communications, conclusions, resolutions, reports, etc.). Fundamental principles such as primacy and direct effect of EU law will also be covered.

Building on the first module, the second module will cover the EU enlargement policy and methodology, the approximation strategy and the accession negotiations. Special attention will be given to the screening process, as well as the structure and process of the accession negotiations. This module aims at strengthening of the ability of national civil servants and other public employees to prepare for and participate in the accession negotiations.

Following, the third module will cover all directives and regulations under Chapter 27 (EU environmental acquis), thus providing participants with a complete overview of EU Environmental legislation which candidate and potential candidate countries need to integrate into their national systems. The module will cover horizontal legislation (such as environmental impact assessment, strategic environmental assessment, the three pillars of the Aarhus convention) as well as sectoral legislation (waste management, water protection, biodiversity). Finally, Gender Equality, Equity and Environment will be covered in this module.

The last module will go into specifics of several environmental fields. The main topics will be detailed studies on some of the EU Directives included in Chapter 27, namely Ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe (directive 2008/50/EC), Nature protection, covering the birds directive (2009/147/EC) and the habitats directive (92/43/EEC) both establishing the Natura 2000 network, and finally the first pillar of the Aarhus Convention, the access to environmental information (directive 2003/4/EC) and the INSPIRE directive (2007/02/EC) establishing an infrastructure for spatial information in Europe to support Community environmental policies.

Learn more about the training here.

*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.

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