Cohesion Policy and Sustainable Development

How can the Cohesion Policy contribute to the transition to green economy? A research recently carried out by a consortium led by the Institute for European Environmental Policy with the support of the European Commission, explores this issue. The publication assesses the impact of Cohesion Policy investments 2007-2013 on the environment and how sustainable development have been included into planning, implementation and follow-up at strategic, programming and policy level.

The study focuses on four key environmental themes: climate change and clean energy; sustainable transport; conservation and management of natural resources; and sustainable consumption and production.

The publication includes case studies, analysis of the available data at EU level, in particular in relation to expenditure as well as recommendations on how the integration of sustainable development into Cohesion Policy could be improved.

The study shows that the cohesion policy can bring benefits to the tourism sector by creating growth opportunities in this field and improving attractiveness of places forĀ investors, workers and businesses. The research stresses the importance to invest on Natura 2000 sites: this can improve theĀ  quality of life and environmental sustainability of communities adjacent to the sites and create opportunities for eco-tourism.

The study is available at: ec.europa.eu/regional_policy

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