Today, the Commission decided to register a European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) entitled ‘Call to Action – Environmental protection in all policies’. The organisers of the initiative call on the Commission to propose a legal act with the aim of ensuring that Member States take into account environmental considerations when adopting national measures. As the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) fulfils the necessary conditions, the Commission considers that it is legally admissible. The Commission has not analysed the substance of the proposal at this stage.
Following today’s registration, the organisers can start collecting signatures. If a European Citizens’ Initiative receives 1 million statements of support within 1 year from at least seven different Member States, the Commission will have to react. The Commission could decide either to take the request forward or not, and will be required to explain its reasoning.
The European Citizens’ Initiative was introduced with the Lisbon Treaty as an agenda-setting tool in the hands of citizens. It was officially launched in April 2012.
The conditions for admissibility are: (1) the proposed action does not manifestly fall outside the framework of the Commission’s powers to submit a proposal for a legal act, (2) it is not manifestly abusive, frivolous or vexatious and (3) it is not manifestly contrary to the values of the Union.
Since the beginning of the ECI, the Commission has received 109 requests to launch a European Citizens’ Initiative, 85 of which were legally admissible and thus qualified to be registered.
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