IMPEL adopted a strategic document which describes the focus and priorities of the network for the next few years and how it will adapt to meet the challenges ahead.
Need to change
A recent independent evaluation of IMPEL and its work programme confirmed that IMPEL’s work is highly valued by its members and other stakeholders, particularly its focus on practical implementation, an d its informal ways of working, openness and transparency. However, IMPEL could achieve more by improving the level of engagement with its members, the focus and prioritisation of its work programme, the communication and embedding of outputs, and partnership working with other networks. IMPEL also needs to respond to other important challenges and opportunities, including its key role in the 7th EU Environment Action Programme (EAP) agenda, the request of the European Commission that IMPEL should broaden its focus and consider other areas of the acquis, such as water, waste and nature protection in its work programme and the need to support member organisations which are facing increasing implementation challenges with fewer resources.
Understanding the Implementation Gap
Work is already underway to do get a clearer picture of what the implementation gap of EU environmental legislation entails. IMPEL is assessing the priorities in the 7th EAP, consulting with the European Commission and the European Environment Agency and other stakeholders including NGOs and business groups, and carrying out a survey of our members to gain their perspective on implementation problems and solutions.
In its new structure, IMPEL’s work will focus on five thematic areas, namely:
- Industry regulation
- Waste and TFS
- Water and land
- Nature protection
- Cross-cutting tools and approaches
Expert Teams (ETs) will develop each of these thematic areas. The ETs are responsible for specifying activities that address key implementation gaps, producing proposals for funding, overseeing the delivery of those activities and the quality of outputs.
IMPEL will further step up engagement with its member countries to raise awareness of the importance of our work and to achieve greater benefits for member organisations through enhanced take-up of activities and outputs. It will also take forward opportunities to develop partnerships and joint working with other networks that are working in the field of environmental protection and enforcement in Europe and internationally.