Miguel Castroviejo reviews the Spanish Presidency’s achievements in the environmental field


Last Thursday, 25 January, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg held a breakfast-debate with Miguel Castroviejo Bolíbar, Counsellor for the Environment at the Permanent Representation of Spain to the EU. The presentation dealt with the achievements of the Spanish Presidency in the environmental field.

The event began with a brief speech by the President of the Chamber, Pablo López Álvarez, who, in addition to introducing the speaker, wanted to highlight the success of the Spanish Presidency of the Council of the Union. In this sense, he congratulated Castroviejo and the whole PERMREP team for the successes achieved during the second half of 2023.

The Councillor then began his speech by explaining that the Spanish Presidency managed to finalise 22 Green Deal-related dossiers during its term of office, “a very high number” compared to the average number of dossiers normally closed during the six months of a Council Presidency.

Among the issues agreed during the Presidency, Castroviejo mentioned the reduction of harmful emissions in industrial installations, the ban on exporting hazardous waste or plastics to OECD countries and the strengthening of the regulation of C02 emissions for heavy-duty road vehicles, among others. The initiatives launched during the Presidency were part of Europe’s efforts to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.

At the political level, the rapporteur highlighted the difficulty of establishing common positions in the environmental field, saying that discussions in the Council “are very complex” as climate is an issue that “needs broad consensus”.

The presentation was followed by a Q&A session in which attendees asked questions on topics such as future European directives on municipal waste, new regulations on the intellectual property of packaging and the circular recycling model for plastics.