2014 was a year of political change with the European elections, new political groups appearing in the European Parliament, and the new European Commission taking office. The Juncker-Commission brought fresh wind and a new approach on being “big on big things and small on small things”. With careful optimism, the Juncker-Investment Plan and better regulation cutting red-tape are initiatives in the right direction.
UEPG got in contact with new EU decisionmakers to present the achievements and ambitions of the European Aggregates Industry. Despite the economic crisis, still heavily present in our sector, 2014/15 again demonstrated that aggregates producing companies relentlessly improve their performance in Environmental, Technical, Health and Safety and Economical aspects.
UEPG focused on contributing to the EU Raw Material Strategy, the Circular Economy and Resource Efficiency, the Natura 2000 Fitness Check and Biodiversity, Safer and Healthier Workplace, the evaluation of the Occupational Safety and Health Directives, technical standards and the implementation of the Construction Products Regulation. UEPG has achieved numerous benefits and savings for aggregates producers which are outlined in this Annual Review.
UEPG continues to aim for a sustainable supply of aggregates essential to society, to contribute to the recovery of the European Aggregates Industry, its competitiveness and growth, to enhance a Health and Safety culture and a European Social Dialogue, to contribute to the environment and biodiversity, and to build consistent operational standards for our sector. This work would not have been possible without continued close cooperation, shared responsibility and recognised trust of all UEPG Members. A highlight was the UEPG Sustainable Development Awards Exhibition to present rewarded companies in Europe for their excellence. More than 50 entries of best practice on Social, Economical, Environmental and Biodiversity stewardship were showcased at several occasions in Brussels.
UEPG also published its Vision 2020 for a Sustainable Industry in a Sustainable Europe. The brochure is available on the UEPG website translated in several languages. 2015 is the pursuit of this ongoing activities on behalf of our industry to continue to be carried on by our highly efficient UEPG Team based in Brussels. Progress will be driven by our highly-dedicated Committees, Task Forces and Working Groups, relying on the support of all our Members to keep UEPG on its path of continuous improvement, leading initiatives and cooperation towards true sustainability and resource efficiency.