EU taxonomy: NGOs sue EU Commission over forest-damaging assessment criteria

European Business & Biodiversity Campaign - News

EU taxonomy: NGOs sue EU Commission over forest-damaging assessment criteria

After several NGOs left the EU Platform for Sustainable Finance in protest, the next bang follows a few days later: NGOs from seven EU countries are suing the EU Commission over what they see as illegal criteria for bioenergy and forestry projects in the EU taxonomy.

© Rosina Kaiser
09/23/2022: The NGOs complain that, contrary to clear provisions in the Taxonomy Regulation, the assessment criteria for these sectors are unscientific, useless for mitigating climate change, harmful to biodiversity, and thus not only unsuitable as sustainability criteria, but counterproductive - a clear violation of the purpose of the Taxonomy.

Global Nature Fund and OroVerde support the lawsuit. Among other things, burning wood can only be sustainable if it is wood residues that cannot be more usefully recycled, e.g. from defective furniture or old construction timber. However, the EU taxonomy criteria do not prevent additional clearing to directly produce firewood or wood pellets from the felled trees. This increases exploitation pressure on forests, reduces the sequestration of CO2 in wood and soils, and poses a threat to the biodiversity of forest ecosystems.

In their joint project "Investments for Forest and Biodiversity Conservation", Global Nature Fund and OroVerde are particularly concerned with the forest criteria in the EU taxonomy and will also take a closer look at and present selected investment examples as part of a market analysis.

Author: OroVerde/GNF