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How the European Commission prepared EU rules defining the ‘taxonomy’ classification for sustainable investments

The complainants, members of the European Parliament (MEPs), were concerned about how the European Commission prepared EU rules defining what economic activities are classified as environmentally sustainable for the purposes of investment, the so-called ‘taxonomy’. According to the overarching legislation (the Taxonomy Regulation), the Commission was to adopt a list of such activities by means of a ‘delegated act’. The MEPs expressed concern that the Commission did not carry out an impact assessment and or a public consultation prior to adopting the draft rules.

The Ombudsman found that there were no grounds to open an inquiry into the complaint, as the Commission had acted within its powers and provided a reasonable explanation as to the steps it took in preparing the draft act.