Businesses urge Belgian Presidency to deliver on Nature Restoration Law

In a business letter sent this morning, European companies call on the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the EU to ensure the adoption of the Nature Restoration Law before the end of June.  

In light of the current deadlock on the Nature Restoration Law, companies have mobilised once again to reiterate their support for the law and remind decision-makers about a strong business case for nature restoration in Europe as 3 million companies in the Euro area are highly dependent on at least one ecosystem service [1].

“We, the undersigned Belgian and European businesses and business associations, are calling for the Belgian Presidency of the Council to ensure an urgent adoption of the EU Nature Restoration Law, as agreed upon by the co-legislators in November 2023 and adopted by the European Parliament in February 2024,” reads the letter. 

This is a follow-up initiative from the business statement signed last year by over 100 major companies, calling on Member States to adopt the long-awaited law. The letter piles up pressure on Member States and the Belgian Presidency to bring the law across the finish line, following another powerful letter from environment ministers, urging their counterparts to adopt the law, and poll results showing that 75% of citizens in countries opposing the law are in favour of it.

The Nature Restoration Law, adopted by the European Parliament in February this year, has been in a deadlock since Hungary, later followed by Slovakia, revoked their previous support for the law. Despite a new government in Poland and hopeful signs from Austria, the two countries’ unwillingness to support the NRL has further added to the stalemate. For the law to pass, it is necessary that these two countries, Belgium or other Member States currently not supporting the law (Finland, Italy, the Netherlands, and Sweden) switch their position.

Ursula Woodburn, Director of CISL’s Europe office and the Corporate Leaders Group Europe: “Well-designed, nature-positive policy will create new economic opportunities, cut emissions, enhance resilience towards climate disasters, and improve health globally. Leading businesses and investors know that there is no time to waste to heal ecosystems, and seize the unique opportunity represented by the Nature Restoration Law for Europe to show leadership and boost its own resilience and future economy. European Member states can turn that opportunity into reality with a positive vote on 17th June in the Environment Council.”

Hans Stegeman, Group Director Impact and Economics at Triodos Bank: “We are facing an ecosystems crisis, which ultimately is a threat to the very existence on this planet. It is everybody’s duty to preserve and restore nature and biodiversity. To help tackle the biodiversity crisis, the nature restoration law is crucial. That is why we call on the Belgian presidency of the Council of the European Union to ensure the adoption of this essential law.”

Giles Dickson, Chief Executive Officer at Wind Europe: “Wind energy and nature restoration go hand in hand. Europe’s wind industry is committed to protecting and restoring Europe’s natural environment. We strongly support the agreement on the Nature Restoration Law reached by EU Member States and the European Parliament in November 2023. We call on the Belgian EU Presidency to do the decent and institutionally correct thing as the Presidency and now support the formal adoption of the agreed text.

Notes for editors

More information

Annick Hus
Communications Officer Biodiversity, EEB

Businesses urge Belgian Presidency to deliver on Nature Restoration Law
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