Based in Brussels, Ariel Brunner is Senior Head of Policy with the environmental NGO BirdLife Europe. He coordinates work on a wide range of EU policies ranging from nature and biodiversity conservation, to climate and energy, fisheries and agriculture.
Over the last decade he has been deeply involved in debates on reform of the Common Agriculture Policy and is widely recognised as prominent expert on the environmental impacts of EU farm policies. He has chaired DG Agriculture’s Advisory Group on Agriculture and Environment and has been a member of its Expert group on Public Goods, and of the European Commission’s High level steering group on the European Innovation Partnership on agriculture.
In recent years, he has played a leading role in the NatureAlert campaign to defend and acheieve better implementation of the EU nature protection legislation. He has been very active in debates over the sustainability of renewable energy and in particular of bioenergy, where he has been one of the pioneers in criticising EU support to biofuels. He has been involved in numerous studies, policy developments and political processes linked to the EU Renewable energy Directives, the sustainability criteria for biofuels, the Indirect Land Use Change controversy etc.
Before moving to Brussels he was following the implementation of EU nature conservation legislation in Italy and has been instrumental to the designation of the country’s Special Protection Areas network (sites protected under the EU Wild Birds Directive). He has been involved in species conservation projects, legal battles for the conservation of protected sites and in efforts to improve implementations of hunting legislation.
Born in Israel, he holds an M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences at Milan University.