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News from the

December 2015


COP21: 195 countries adopt the first universal climate agreement

Paris, 12 December 2015 - An historic agreement to combat climate change and unleash actions and investment towards a low carbon, resilient and sustainable future was agreed by 195 nations in Paris.
The Paris Agreement for the first time brings all nations into a common cause based on their historic, current and future responsibilities.
The universal agreement’s main aim is to keep a global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius and to drive efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The 1.5 degree Celsius limit is a significantly safer defense line against the worst impacts of a changing climate.
Additionally, the agreement aims to strengthen the ability to deal with the impacts of climate change.  
To reach these ambitious and important goals, appropriate financial flows will be put in place, thus making stronger action by developing countries and the most vulnerable possible, in line with their own national objectives.
“The Paris Agreement allows each delegation and group of countries to go back home with their heads held high. Our collective effort is worth more than the sum of our individual effort. Our responsibility to history is immense” said Laurent Fabius, President of the COP 21 UN Climate change conference and French Foreign Minister.
If you want to know more on COP21, please click here!
Bitola Park, FYROM

News from partners


All countries: training programme

Distance learning courses:
a) “Social media, Activism and participation”, The course on social media (read more):  Next e-trainings: 12th - 26th January 2016.
b) “Get funding from the European Union”: the course developed by regards the EU as resource partner (read more).  Next e-trainings: 5th - 19th January 2016
To take part, interested participants should first register to the e-learning platform here and then choose the course to attend from the "course catalogue". Further inquiries about the course may be sent to (or click here).

In-country news: in action

Albania: The partner in Albania is working on a common position paper of the network related to environmental issues in the region. All partners of in the region have tackled different environmental issues in their countries as water issues in Albania and Turkey, waste management in Kosovo, chemicals and their contribution to water pollution in Serbia, and status of environmental public awareness process in Macedonia. The policy brief will be published for the wider community by the beginning of 2016.
The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: On December 3, 2015 was held the final event within the project "Technical assistance for strengthening the institutional capacity to harmonize and implement the legislation in the field of water management”. The event was attended by Mr Stevo Temelkovski, the Deputy Minister of Environment and Physical Planning, and HE Aivo Orav, the EU Ambassador in Macedonia. The project helped for implementation and further transposition of EU water legislation through the preparation of priority laws in the field of water management in accordance with the Water Framework Directive, strengthening the administrative capacity at central level, for the implementation of legislation on water and for the creation of the management plan for the basin of the river Vardar (read more).
On December 10, 2015 was held the initial meeting within the project "Stabilisation of greenhouse gas emissions from road transport through a double reduction in fuel consumption: the regional implementation of the Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GEFI)", which started in May 2015, and will last until June 2018. The main beneficiary of this project is the Ministry of Environment and Physical Planning. The Representative of Macedonia, together with representatives of government institutions, business and NGO sectors was invited to attend the meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to inform participants about the general goals and work plan and to present the findings of the implemented activities: determination the initial state of specific emissions of CO2 from light vehicles in traffic for 2005, 2008 and 2013” and preparation of “Review on transportation and implementation of the relevant EU directives regulating emissions of CO2" (read more). 
Serbia: Serbian partner of the team published a new brochure, with the conclusions and recommendations reached following the Seminar for media that was organised by the Environmental Ambassadors for Sustainable Development with the support from the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Serbia.  Title of the brochure is: MEDIA ON ENVIRONMENT AND CLIMATE CHANGE IN SERBIA (Chapter 27 in EU accession).
The publication is available in Serbian (

News from the EU

I. Dutch presidency starts in January 2016
As the year draws to a close, Luxembourg will step down as Presidency of the European Union to be replaced by the Netherlands in January. For more information on the past and upcoming presidency: The European Environmental Bureau (EEB) assessment of the Luxembourg Presidency and its Ten Green Tests for the Netherlands.
II. Mid-term review of the EU's Biodiversity Strategy
The mid-term review of the EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 describes progress made in implementing the actions and achieving the targets set out in the strategy adopted in 2011. The report demonstrates that action on the ground, supported by adequate financing, can protect and restore nature and the benefits it provides. As regards the on-going fitness check of the Birds and Habitats Directives, results suggest that the legislation is not fundamentally flawed, but problems have mainly arisen due to its incomplete or inadequate implementation. It is the general view that the Nature directives do not need to be revised, as this would result in a long period of legal uncertainty, which would weaken the legislation. Review also call for a better enforcement of the legislation, including through the use of proportionate, effective and dissuasive penalties. For more information please click here.
III. Air Quality Report 2015
Air pollution is the single largest environmental health risk in Europe. It shortens people’s lifespan and contributes to serious illnesses such as heart disease, respiratory problems and cancer. The report estimates that air pollution continues to be responsible for more than 430 000 premature deaths in Europe. The EEA report 'Air quality in Europe — 2015 report' examines the European population’s exposure to air pollutants and provides a snapshot of air quality based on data from official monitoring stations across Europe. It shows that most city dwellers continue to be exposed to air pollutants at levels deemed unsafe by the World Health Organization (WHO). For more information click here.

Latest from the region

Cross Border Partnership Event between Albanian and Macedonian CSOs and Local Government Units, January 25th, 2016
Deadline for applications: January 10th, 2016
TACSO Albania and Macedonia Offices in cooperation with EU Delegations from both countries and Operating Structures of IPA/Cross Border Cooperation Program 2014-2020 Macedonia and Albania are going to organize a Partnership Day event between Albanian and Macedonian CSOs and Local Government Units (LGUs). The aim of the event is to facilitate the establishment of contacts and partnerships between CSOs and LGUs benefiting from IPA/CBC Program between Albania and Macedonia (read more).

Funding opportunities

Visegrad Small Grants program on culture, science and research, education, youth exchanges, cross-border cooperation (bi-/trilateral projects possible), and tourism promotion. Any legal entity or natural person worldwide is eligible for funding. However preferences are given to applicants from non-governmental and non-profit organizations, municipalities and local governments, public schools and universities, research and scientific bodies and public institutions in general with the exception of organizations directly funded from state budgets.
The deadline for application is 1st of March 2016. For more information, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development?
A: This Agenda is a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity. It also seeks to strengthen universal peace in larger freedom. We recognise that eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions, including extreme poverty, is the greatest global challenge and an indispensable requirement for sustainable development. All countries and all stakeholders, acting in collaborative partnership, will implement this plan. We are resolved to free the human race from the tyranny of poverty and want and to heal and secure our planet. We are determined to take the bold and transformative steps which are urgently needed to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path. As we embark on this collective journey, we pledge that no one will be left behind. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets which we are announcing today demonstrate the scale and ambition of this new universal Agenda. They seek to build on the Millennium Development Goals and complete what these did not achieve. They seek to realize the human rights of all and to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls. They are integrated and indivisible and balance the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic, social and environmental (read more).

See what's going on in partners' countries

This document has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union.
The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of consortium and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union


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