Published Thursday, 03 March 2016

Comparing costs of implementing EU policy across Member States 

This report by IEEP assesses if there are differences in the costs of implementation of EU environmental law across Member States. Identifying differences in the costs of implementation can show where there is scope for best practice to be adopted to cut costs.

The study undertook a literature review and developed case studies on the following policy areas: permitting costs under the Industrial Emissions Directive, costs of implementing the Strategic Environmental Assessment Directive, costs of decision making under the Habitats Directive, and costs of producer responsibility schemes under the End-of-Life Vehicles Directive.

Both the literature review and case studies demonstrate that the EU environmental acquis places a range of obligations on public administrations, businesses and individuals leading to administrative costs. The study finds that there are differences in these costs between Member States, even where the EU requirements are the same. The report makes recommendations to the European Commission, Member States and businesses, which centre around the need to understand why costs of implementation arise and to allow for lower cost choices, while still delivering the necessary environmental benefits.