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The New Instruments to Achieve Sustainable Territorial Development in the EU

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image of Journal for European Environmental & Planning Law

Despite the EU's lack of competence on spatial planning, mainly due to the Member States' reluctance to give up some of their sovereignty in this area given the strategic nature of territory, a pan-European approach providing solutions to all its problems has become urgent and necessary. Moreover, the accession of 10 new Member States has entailed an enlargement of the EU territory, requiring a deeper analysis of the new situation which has led to the emergence of 'sustainable territorial development' as the common element between the multilevel relationships set by the European Governance White Book of the European Commission and the provisions of the ESDP. In fact, with the preparation of this and other European soft law documents, the EU has found an effective type of instrument to deal with the territorial problems without requiring any competences in the area of spatial planning for its actions. In this way, a clearer means of achieving the emerging objective of sustainable territorial development has been developed.

Affiliations: 1: Universidad Carlos de Madrid


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