MEPs at the European Parliament’s environment committee have given the green light to the EU’s provisional political agreement on the EU nature restoration law.
On Wednesday, MEPs voted 53 votes in favour of the agreement to 28 votes against.
The full parliament still has to vote on the deal and this is currently scheduled for the plenary session of MEPs in Strasbourg in February.
Ireland South MEP Seán Kelly welcomed the vote.
"Considering how controversial this legislation has come, I am happy to see the environment committee's support for the EU nature restoration law.
"This legislation is a crucial response to citizens' expectations regarding the protection and restoration of biodiversity, the landscape, and oceans, aligning with the conclusions of the Conference on the Future of Europe," Kelly said.
The new law sets ambitious targets, aiming to restore at least 20% of the EU's land and sea areas by 2030 and all ecosystems in need of restoration by 2050.
"There were many legitimate concerns raised throughout the process, but I am quite satisfied that agreement takes these on board while still providing a solid basis to improve nature in Europe.
“The EU would have had little credibility at COP 28 in Dubai if we voted the nature restoration down, I hope when this comes to the full plenary next month that we will see a solid majority,” he said.