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Urban Environment

Thematic Strategy on the Urban Environment - Impact Assessment

The Thematic Strategy on the Urban Environment has been subject to an Impact Assessment (pdf ~218Kb). This is an internal Commission procedure designed to evaluate the impacts of the different ideas and approaches being considered for the Thematic Strategy was adopted in January 2006. The environmental, social and economic aspects were considered in parallel with the development of the final Strategy. By undertaking an impact assessment, the Commission can be sure that the consequences of the Thematic Strategy are understood.

The Commission has produced internal guidance on undertaking an impact assessment which is available here. The impact assessment process was open and transparent.

Consultants (AEA Technology) were appointed to provide baseline data for the impact assessment. All reports were circulated to the Member States and the EU Expert Group on the Urban Environment (which includes representatives from all stakeholder groups) for comments.

  • A report of the legal and other obligations in each EU 25 Member State as regards environmental management plans, environmental management systems and sustainable urban transport plans. These are key ideas from the February 2004 Communication " Towards a Thematic Strategy on the Urban Environment".In order to understand the likely effect of the final Thematic Strategy on the Urban Environment, it is important to have a clear understanding of the current situation.


  • The results of a survey of all capital cities and other urban areas in the EU 25 Member States with more than 90,000 inhabitants. These urban areas were asked various questions about environmental management plans, environmental management systems and sustainable urban transport plans. The list of towns and cities was agreed by the Member States and the EU Expert Group on the Urban Environment.


  • A report on the likely costs and benefits of environmental management plans, environmental management systems and sustainable urban transport plans. This report was discussed with and supported by the Member States and the EU Expert Group on the Urban Environment at the meeting of 17 May 2005.