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Law and governance

The European Union has adopted many important laws on water, nature, air and waste. The European Commission ensures that national governments correctly apply EU environmental laws to improve environmental standards for Europeans.

Environmental governance

To achieve better results on the ground, the European Union has also launched initiatives to improve national compliance with these laws. Engaged citizens are also key to improving compliance and a healthier environment. Therefore, environmental governance covers both compliance with environmental rules and active public engagement.

Commission support for compliance assurance at national level complements the Commission’s role in overseeing the implementation of EU environmental laws through infringements procedures.

With over 200 legal acts to monitor in 27 countries, this is a major task in the environmental field.


The Environmental Implementation Review (EIR) is a regular reporting tool designed to improve the implementation of EU environmental laws and policies.

The European Commission ensures that all EU countries properly apply EU environmental law and launches infringement procedures when this is not the case.

The Better Regulation agenda ensures evidence-based and transparent EU law-making based on the views of those that may be affected.