EU "planning to devolve enforcement powers"

Official fails to convince MEPs that burden of work at central level requires new thinking

A European Commission plan to devolve some of its responsibility to member states to ensure enforcement of EU environmental rules sparked angry reactions from members of the Parliament's environment committee, meeting yesterday in Brussels.

Georges Kremlis, an official in the Commission's environment directorate, told MEPs the department was considering "several avenues" to decentralise enforcement activities, including the possibility for "autonomous and independent mechanisms within member states to handle complaints from citizens on non-priority cases".

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