The course addresses and problematizes the EU's environmental and energy policy. First, the EU's legal foundation, the policy process, and the commitment to economic growth and integration of markets are analysed from an environmental perspective. This foundation and commitment constitutes a tension with environmental considerations which is captured in the concept of sustainable development and the EU's commitment to this concept. One aim is to provide a thorough understanding of the vagueness of sustainable development and in what ways the concept is used by/in the EU. This provides the baseline for thematic elaborations on different environmental and energy problems and future challenges for the EU. These thematic elaborations will also include analyses of the relation between the EU and member states, the EU as an international actor, the role of NGO's and other lobby groups.