Comment—EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement impact on environmental law

Comment—EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement impact on environmental law

The EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) agreed between the EU and the UK contains some ambitious language on climate change, but the effect of the broader provisions on environmental protection remains uncertain. The preamble to the TCA acknowledges the parties' commitment to high environmental standards and the fight against climate change. Provisions concerning environmental matters are scattered, but the underlying principle is that the parties remain free to determine their own domestic regulation on environment and climate change. Vanessa Jakovich, partner at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, comments on the agreement, noting that there is room for optimism in terms of future co-operation on environmental regulation after the Brexit transition period ends at 11 pm on 31 December 2020 (IP completion day).

Original news

On 24 December 2020, the UK Government and the European Commission announced a deal in principle on the legal terms of the future UK-EU relationship. A copy of the draft EU-UK TCA, agreed at negotiator level (to be ratified) has been published, along with a number of associated declarations and agreements including a separate Nuclear Cooperation Agreement and an Agreement on Security Procedures for Exchanging and Protecting Classified Information. For background reading, see: Brexit Bulletin—draft EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement published, 

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