4 Networks Conference E-Zine.
The four European environmental crime enforcement networks, IMPEL - The European Union Network for the Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Law, EUFJE - The European Union Forum of Judges for the Environment, ENPE - The European Network of Prosecutors for the Environment, and EnviCrimeNet, held their third joint Four Networks conference at the Carabinieri Officers School in Rome, Italy on the 28-29 September 2023.
The conference titled “Co-operation in strengthening environmental enforcement” focussed on a variety of important topics and themes including innovative methods to assist prosecutions, how to make environmental crime less profitable and how to measure enforcement success. environmental impacts and challenges in Ukraine.
Presentations and case studies were delivered by specialists from many European countries, as well as Australia and North America, where learning and experience was shared and discussed in plenary and breakout sessions.
The Network Chairs agreed a Conference Statement, in which it was stated that going forward we need to increase the probability of detecting and successfully prosecuting illicit actions, focus on prevention rather than just reaction, and thus legislation, regulation and resources must promote, ensure and support the actions of the relevant authorities to this end.Full Conference Statement
“It’s lovely to see so many here, we have attendees from Australia, from the USA, from Europe and from Ukraine. This is a networking event, and if all of us meet one or two additional people here, it expands our network dramatically. Special thanks to The Carabinieri Officers School, Rome for hosting us at this wonderful event”.
- Anne Brosnan, President of ENPE, Conference Chair.
“The 4 Networks Conference allows us to reconnect with each other and facilitate the exchange of ideas and processes so that we are all working towards one common goal - the identification and prosecution of environmental crime. Without the collaborative experience, this would be impossible”.
- Vinciane Sacré, TRAFFIC (EU-TWIX), Belgium
In addition to the excellent plenary interventions, we were grateful for the high number and quality of specialist presentations delivered in our dedicated breakout sessions. It was clear from the feedback from our delegates attending these that:
We need new techniques to prevent and detect environmental offences
We need administrative and criminal law enforcement to complement each other
We need to make environmental crime unprofitable
We need to assess, remediate and compensate for the damage incurred
We need to measure enforcement results
Bringing together people from all over the world means we can collaborate in ways that only face-to-face networking allows. Here are a few words from our delegates highlighting the benefits of the conference.
First Deputy Public Prosecutor, Chief Prosecutor of the Environmental Crime Unit of the Prosecutor’s Office Antwerp (Belgium)
“It was a great pleasure to attend two days of interesting presentations and fruitful meetings in the beautiful setting of the Scuola Ufficiali Carabinieri. The great strength of this 4 Networks Conference is its multidisciplinary approach on environmental enforcement. This creates a great opportunity to connect with other specialists, to discuss similar problems that we face in our different home countries and to exchange ideas on how to improve cooperation. I returned home with a renewed energy and motivation to continue my work as a specialised environmental prosecutor in Belgium.”
Senior Advisor – Enforcement & Waste Crime Team – Environment Agency (England)
“This was the first time I’d attended an international conference in person. I’m very grateful to IMPEL for giving me the opportunity to attend. It was brilliant to network with so many specialists, I spoke with so many people far too many to mention but I learned more about satellite technology, end of waste, artificial intelligence & money laundering among other things.
I gained perspectives from many nations including Italy, Poland, Spain, Latvia, Netherlands, Wales, Scotland, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland respectively. I was particularly interested in the sessions about “How to make environmental crime unprofitable” due to my work on tackling waste crime. The “Australian example” by Kate Robinson and “North American perspectives” by Joe Poux and Jeff Bray were particularly insightful given I had no previous insight into environmental crime or enforcement in their respective nations. The venue was outstanding, the Carabinieri really looked after us all and their band performance was one of the highlights of the conference. I recommend the 4 Networks extend future conferences and include more dedicated networking time into the agenda. I could quite happily of spent hours more talking and listening to all the very experienced and distinguished people at the event.”
The 2023 Four Networks Conference ‘Co-operation in Strengthening Environmental Enforcement’ co-organized convened and hosted by, IMPEL - European Union Network for the Implementation and Enforcement of Environmental Law, EUFJE - The European Union Forum of Judges for the Environment, ENPE - European Network of Prosecutors for the Environment, and EnviCrimeNet. We are immensely grateful to our hosts, the Italian Carabinieri Officers School for the generous loan of their wonderful facilities for the duration of the event, for the support from the European Commission, and to all the international organizations from more than 44 countries that were speakers and active participants in this event. Finally, and although last but by no means least, we are very grateful to the 230 delegates who attended in person and the 189 who joined virtual by weblink for their enthusiastic participation which made the event so successful.