Study on the Polluter Pays principle and Environmentally Harmful Subsidies

RPA has recently conducted a study for the European Commission’s Directorate-General for the Environment on the Polluter Pays Principle (PPP). The aim of the study was to support the EU’s fitness check of the current application of the PPP across all EU policies which may impact on the objectives of the 8th Environmental Action Programme. The PPP is one of the key principles underlying the EU’s environmental policy requiring polluters to pay for the measures they take to stop pollution from happening and for the pollution they cause. Implementing the principle provides an incentive to avoid damaging the environment at source and makes polluters responsible. The study examined whether EU and Member States relevant policies ensure polluters bear the cost of measures to prevent, control and remedy pollution. It provided an overview of the current application of the PPP in the EU and the analysis of environmentally harmful subsidies. Furthermore, the study considered the five evaluation questions on effectiveness, efficiency, coherence, relevance and EU added value of the implementation of the PPP in line with the EU’s Better Regulation Guidelines.