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NGOs Call for Tougher Protections in EU CSDDD

In a joint appeal to MEPs and EU Commissioners, 17 environmental networks and organisations have recommended a more comprehensive approach to environmental protection within the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD). They reference a recent study, titled Planetary boundaries for business – The need for comprehensive environmental due diligence in the CSDDD, to underscore their concerns. The study examines whether the proposed versions of the directive by the European Commission, Council and Parliament effectively address high-profile cases of business-induced environmental degradation. It criticises the Commission and Council’s approach, which relies on a narrow set of international conventions to define environmental adverse impacts. The study finds that this approach falls short in addressing several severe environmental cases, including the negative effects of intensive farming in the Mar Menor, air pollution from mining waste in the Cerro Matoso coal mine, and the destructive effects of oil spills and waste in connection to the oil and gas company Perenco. The environmental organisations argue that reliance on international conventions leaves significant environmental harms unaddressed. They advocate for a requirement for companies to consider adverse impacts on various environmental categories, aligning with the European Parliament’s position. This, they contend, offers better environmental protection where international treaty law is lacking, promotes a true risk-based approach, and enhances the coherence of EU legislation. The organisations say this would fulfil the CSDDD’s objective of protecting human rights and the environment, ensuring its relevance in the face of future developments. Furthermore, they argue that it will create a level playing field across economic sectors and simplify compliance with the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). 

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