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EU Structural Fund with negative environmental impacts

More than two thirds of the projects financed with the help of the European Union's Structural Fund have effects that are contrary to EU environmental policy objectives.
That is the basic message of a study entitled "Environmentally Harmful Subsidies - a Threat to Biodiversity" produced by Green Budget Germany (GBG) and published by Deutscher Naturschutzring (DNR). The study lists numerous cases where European funds have been spent on projects that have negative impacts on the environment and lead to a loss of biodiversity. The examples include questionable hydropower plants, motorways planned and built without mitigating measures for the environment, and the unbalanced development of European waterways. The conclusion drawn by the authors of the study is that ecological criteria and the aspect of sustainability must be included in the assessment and selection procedures for projects proposed for EU funding.
The DNR and GBG are also critical of the subsidy award procedures in Germany, a country in which one quarter of the tax perks available today were introduced before 1940 and which they say has antiquated laws and regulations that are detrimental to the declared goal of sustainable development.
To download the study, go to www.eu-koordination.de/index (de)
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