Commission welcomes European Parliament's vote for improved aviation safety
The European Parliament has adopted new rules to help prevent aircraft accidents. With the Regulation on the reporting, analysis and follow up of occurrences, information on aviation safety incidents will flow more efficiently and faster, allowing for a thorough analysis and adoption of necessary action to help prevent similar incidents from happening again.
Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport, said: "Most aircraft accidents result from a combination of smaller errors or malfunctions which, taken together, cause an accident. By gathering more information about isolated safety incidents, and taking action to address them, we will help to prevent future accidents. With the expected increase in air traffic in the next two decades, we need to deliver such a system, and make sure that the EU remains the leading region in the world for aviation safety. I am glad the European Parliament shares our vision and fully supported our proposal."
The system involves all actors in the aviation sector – airlines, manufacturers, air traffic controllers, aircrew, mechanics, national authorities and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA); they must gather and exchange incident information, and ensure that action is taken where it is most effective. A European network of safety analysts will be hosted by the EASA. It will be charged with detecting trends and safety issues of pan-European significance and with recommending appropriate action.
The new system is a cornerstone of a modern approach to safety policy that seeks to improve safety further by learning not only from accidents but also from small incidents and occurrences even if they have not had serious consequences in themselves.
Following the vote in the European Parliament, the Council is expected to endorse the text as adopted by the Parliament, in accordance with the informal agreement reached between the two institutions in December 2013. The new regulation is expected to enter into force in May 2014. It will apply in full 18 months later. In the meantime, preparations will be made to adopt the necessary implementing regulations and to develop necessary guidance material and IT applications for the recording, exchange and analysis of information.
For more information on the Commission's proposal, and facts and figures on occurrence reporting, please see
EU announces finalists for sustainable mobility awards
25 February 2014
The European Commission has announced the six finalists of two awards which honour the actions of European cities in developing and promoting sustainable approaches to urban mobility. European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, in charge of transport, and Commissioner for the Environment Janez Potočnik will present the awards at a ceremony on 24 March in Brussels, Belgium.
With 75 % of Europe’s population expected to be living in urban areas by 2020, it is even more important that our transport choices do not negatively impact on the liveability of our cities. European cities are leading the way in integrating sustainability into their urban mobility plans and raising public awareness.
Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP)
award recognises cities with SUMPs illustrating the ‘integration of economic, social, and environmental policy criteria’, the theme of the 2013 awards. The award is presented to local authorities which demonstrate excellence in developing and implementing their sustainable urban mobility plans to address their city’s mobility challenges. An expert jury evaluates the applications on their achievements and selects a winning city to receive the prize of EUR 10 000. Last year’s winner was Aberdeen City Council, this year’s winner will be revealed at the ceremony on 24 March. 21 applications from 11 EU countries have been submitted.
The finalists for the 2013 SUMP award are:
Rivas Vaciamadrid (Spain)
A more detailed description of each finalist can be found here .
European Mobility Week (EMW)
award rewards the local authority which is most actively promoting sustainable travel and introducing new measures to encourage a shift towards sustainable urban transport. The cities of Budapest, Ljubljana, and Östersund have been selected as finalists for their ambitious and innovative campaign programmes and for the consistent manner in which they have linked their activities to the 2013 EMW theme of ‘Clean Air, It’s Your Move!’ Like Zagreb, which won the 2012 award, this year’s winning city will have the opportunity to work with a professional production company to create a three-minute promotional clip highlighting its achievements. Together with the other finalists and shortlisted cities, the winning city will also be promoted as an example of best practice. An independent panel of transport experts assesses all eligible applications before shortlisting the 10 best local authorities. The 2013 EMW award received 30 applications from 12 countries.
The shortlisted cities and finalists (in bold) for the 2013 EMW award are:
|• Bologna (Italy)
||• Larnaka (Cyprus)
|• Budapest (Hungary)
||• Ljubljana (Slovenia)
|• Gdynia (Poland)
||• Östersund (Sweden)
|• Hudiksvall (Sweden)
||• Sofia (Bulgaria)
|• Labin (Croatia)
||• Turku (Finland)
More details on each finalist can be found here .
TEN-T: EU to support “Green Danube port” in Romania
24 February 2014
The European Union has granted €400,000 from the TEN-T Programme to co-finance a series of studies to promote the development of an eco-efficient port engineering and operation system in the Romanian Port of Giurgiu. The studies contribute to the realisation of the “Waterway axis Rhine/Meuse-Main-Danube” (TEN-T Priority Project 18 ).
The studies, selected for funding under the 2012 TEN-T Multi-Annual Programme, are part of the larger global project which aims to convert the Port of Giurgiu into the first “Green Danube Port” based on integrated energy-efficiency concepts and comprehensive environmental measures for intermodal ports.
They will first take stock of the current situation by undertaking a technical and operational analysis, a market analysis and an environmental assessment, which will be followed be specific studies to support the introduction of innovative technology in the port. The ultimate objective is for the study to deliver the final design of the new Intermodal Port of Giurgiu and also define its business model.
For more information, please consult the project's page !
TEN-T: Modernisation to the Port of Dunkirk in France receives EU funding
25 February 2014
The European Union will co-finance with €1.3 million from the TEN-T Programme a project to better optimise the ro-ro (roll-on, roll-off) terminal in the French port of Dunkirk, in order to improve efficiency and ensure future growth.
The project, which was selected for funding under the 2012 TEN-T Annual Call, specifically concerns works to better optimise the space and traffic flow of the Port’s ro-ro terminal. The aim is to build a completely redesigned ro-ro terminal to improve efficiency, smoothen the traffic flow, reduce the stopover time of vessels and increase frequencies.
Due to the current terminal's design, the stopover time is two hours with 12 calls per day, which does not provide margin for development or growth. Reducing the stopover time will permit the number of calls per day to be extended to 13 or 14. This development is important to the Port, which the third largest French maritime port, handling around 7,000 ships a year.
To achieve this objective the Port of Dunkirk requires the reorganisation of the terminal platform layout, the relocation of facilities and the installation of technical facilities.
Since the Port plans to pursue ro-ro traffic growth, the works will help to alleviate the existing bottlenecks that slow down the traffic flow between the ro-ro terminal and the hinterland. Their completion is expected to also have a positive impact on maritime transport and the environment.
For more information, please consult the project's page !