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Главная->Право->Содержание->Джерела європейського права навколишнього середовища71

Європейське право навколишнього середовища

Джерела європейського права навколишнього середовища71

Directive’s requirements. Most notably, by judgment of 19 March 2002, the Court condemned the Netherlands (Case C-268/00) for failing to fulfil its obligations as regards the quality of bathing water and the frequency of sampling thereof within the periods prescribed by the Directive. During 2002, the Commission also took several decisions under Article 228 for non-compliance with recent judgments of the Court concerning the bathing water quality (cases concerning Germany, Belgium and Sweden). More information concerning the compliance with the parameters of water quality and sampling frequency of Directive 76/160/EEC is also provided by the annual reports on the quality of bathing water24. The Commission has continued proceedings under Article 228 against a number of Member States for not complying with earlier judgments of the Court over their bad application of Directive 76/464/EEC on dangerous substances discharged into the aquatic environment and of the directives setting levels for individual substances, particularly concerning adoption of programmes under Article 7 of the Directive. However, the case concerning Germany could be closed during 2002 since that Member State had taken the necessary measures to comply with the earlier judgement of the Court.

Further to the presentation of a guidance document on this issue in 2000, the Commission focused on supporting the implementation of the existing Directive 76/464/EEC and in particular Article 7 on the pollution reduction programmes and the transition to Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy25. An implementation report has been published which built on the guidance document and translated the establishment of pollution reduction programmes into the requirements and approaches of Directive 2000/60/EC. The report found that, first, the infringement procedures improved considerably the compliance with this legislation and thereby improved water quality and, second, the establishment of pollution reduction programmes under Directive 76/464/EEC can be regarded as a building block for the implementation of the Water Framework Directive, in particular the programme of measures under Article 11. Concerning Directive 80/778/EEC relating to the quality of water intended for human consumption (drinking water), the Commission initiated and continued a small number of infringement cases relating to bad application of the Directive, particularly concerning poor quality of drinking water. By judgment of 14 November 2002, the Court condemned Ireland for failure, in its implementing legislation, to reflect the binding character of the requirements of Annex I to the Directive in relation to group water supplies, and for failure to ensure compliance with certain microbiological parameters of Annex I to the Directive (Case C-316/00).

Council Directive 98/83/EC of 3 November 1998 on the quality of water intended for human consumption, which will replace Directive 80/778/EEC from 200326, was due to be transposed into national law by 25 December 2000. The Commission was able to close the most infringement cases for non-communication of implementing measures for this Directive, but in three cases (Belgium, Spain and

24  The reports are available under

25  OJ L 327 , 22.12.2000, p.1.

26  OJ L 330, 5.12.1998, p. 32.



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the United Kingdom) the Commission has taken the decision to bring proceeding in the Court. The Community has two legislative instruments aimed specifically at combating pollution from phosphates and nitrates and the eutrophication they cause. The first, Directive 91/271/EEC, concerns urban waste-water treatment. Member States are required to ensure that, from 1998, 2000 or 2005, depending on population size, all cities have waste-water collection and treatment systems. Since this Directive plays a fundamental role in the campaign for clean water and against eutrophication, the Commission is particularly eager to ensure that it is implemented on time27. During 2002, action in several cases of bad application were taken due to insufficient designation of sensitive areas or non-compliance with the requirements for urban waste water treatment. The Commission also sent a letter of formal notice to several Member States for the lack of a general implementation report and of information on sensitive areas. The second anti-eutrophication measure is Directive 91/676/EEC concerning the protection of waters against pollution caused by nitrates from agricultural sources. The Commission has continued to lay great stress on enforcing this Directive28. During 2002, the Commission took action over bad application of the Directive by a number of Member States concerning lacking or insufficient designation of vulnerable zones as well as the failure to establish action programmes as required by the Directive. Two of these cases were decided by the Court in 2002 (Case C-258/00 against France and Case C-161/00 against Germany). Regrettably, in many cases, the Commission has had to open infringement procedures under Article 228 in order to make Member States to comply with judgments given earlier by the Court.

Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy29 is due to be transposed by 22 December 2003. In May 2001, a Common Implementation Strategy30 was agreed which involves all national, regional and local authorities of Member States, EEA countries, Accession Countries and various stakeholders and NGOs. The strategy includes a large number of joint activities including the development of guidance, the testing of implementation aspects in pilot river basins and the sharing of knowledge and information. So far, nine guidance documents and several technical reports have emerged from this process31. In addition, an extensive European implementation network has been established. The process will continue over the coming years.

5. Nature

The two main legal instruments aimed at protecting nature are Directive 79/ 409/EEC on the conservation of wild birds and Directive 92/43/EEC on the conservation of natural habitats and of wild fauna and flora. Regarding the trans-27 The implementation report for this directive is available under comm/environment/water/water-urbanwaste/report2/report.html

28  The implementation report for this directive is available under comm/environment/water/water-nitrates/report.html

29  OJ L 327, 22.12.2000, p.1.

30  More information under

31  More information under library.



Джерела європейського права навколишнього середовища73

posal of Directive 79/409/EEC, a small number conformity problems remain unresolved. In 2002, the Commission had to continue infringement actions against some Member States, notably concerning hunting periods and hunting practices not in line with the Directive.

The deadline for notifying the implementing measures for Directive 92/43/EEC expired in June 1994. In many cases the transposal is still insufficient, particularly concerning Article 6 on the protection of habitats in the special conservation sites which are to be set up, and Articles 12 to 16 on the protection of species. In its judgment of 5 December 2002, the Court held that by failing to adopt all the laws, regulations and administrative measures necessary to ensure the full and proper transposition of several Articles of the Directive, Belgium has failed to fulfil its obligations under the Directive (Case C-324/01). As in the past, the main problems with the implementation of Directives 79/409/EEC and 92/43/ EEC relate to its bad application, namely the insufficient classification of special protection areas (SPA) for birds and the insufficient selection of the proposed sites of Community importance (SCI) for habitats for inclusion in the Natura 2000 network, or to the protection of such sites.

Existing SPAs for birds in a number of Member States are still too few in number or cover too small an area. The Commission’s strategy revolves around initiating general infringement proceedings, rather than infringement proceedings on a site-by-site basis. By its judgment of 26 November 2002, the Court declared that France has failed to comply with its obligations under Article 4(1) and (2) of Directive 79/409/EEC by not in sufficient measure classifying as special protection areas the territories most suitable for the conservation of the species of wild bird referred to in Annex I to the Directive, and of migratory species, and, in particular, by not classifying a sufficiently large area of the site Plaine des Maures as a special protection area (Case C-202/01). As regards SCI’s, the Commission continued infringement proceedings against several Member States whose selection of sites is either not satisfactory or is under assessment subject to the results of biogeographical seminars. In a number of these cases, the Commission had to start infringement proceedings under Article 228 to make the Member States comply with the earlier judgments of the Commission. Problems remain concerning the special protection regime under Article 4(4) of Directive 79/409/EEC and Article 6(2) to (4) of Directive 92/43/EEC, e.g. wrongly applying or setting aside the special protection regime in relation to various projects affecting sites. In this respect, infringement actions against a number of Member States had to be taken in the course of 2002. Most notably, by its judgment of 13 June 2002, the Court found that Ireland has breached Article 3 of Directive 79/409/EEC and Article 6(2) of Directive 92/43/EEC by failing to take measures necessary to safeguard a sufficient diversity and area of habitats for the Red Grouse and by failing to take appropriate steps to avoid, in a certain special protection area (SPA), the deterioration of habitats of the species for which the SPA was

designated (Case C-117/00). The case arose as a result of an investigation of complaints about the widespread vegetation loss and erosion caused by the overstocking of sheep on fragile upland habitats in the west of Ireland. This judgment is the first case in which the Court has condemned a Member State for the breach of Article 3 of Directive 79/409/EEC. During 2002, the Commission continued setting conditions in Structural Funds plans and programmes and



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rural development programmes requiring Member States to submit outstanding lists for the setting up of the Natura 2000 network in accordance with their obligations under Directives 79/409/EEC and 92/43/EEC.

The Commission has maintained its strict policy with regard to the granting of Community funding for conservation of sites under the LIFE Regulation on sites being integrated or already integrated into the Natura 2000 network. Furthermore, it scrutinises requests for cofinancing from the Cohesion Fund very thoroughly for compliance with environmental regulations. The same applies to various pre-accession funding mechanisms concerning the candidate countries.

Problems with the implementation of Directive 92/43/EEC may also arise with regard to the protection, not of designated or nominated sites, but of species. Article 12 of the Directive establishes a strict protection scheme for species under Annex IV (a), from which Member States can derogate only under the conditions laid down in Article 16(1) and (2).

In its judgment of 20 January 2002, the Court held that Greece has breached Article 12(1)(b) and (c) by failing to take, within the prescribed time-limit, the requisite measures to establish and implement an effective system of strict protection for the sea turtle Caretta caretta on Zakinthos so as to avoid any disturbance of the species during its breeding period and any activity which might bring about deterioration or destruction of its breeding sites (Case C-103/00). This is the first judgment of the European Court of Justice related to Article 12 of the Directive. It underlines the necessity to establish and implement an effective system of strict protection for species listed in Annex IV (a) and interprets the term ‘deliberate’. A similar case against the United Kingdom for its failure to ensure the proper protection of the great crested newt (Triturus cristatus) is pending (Case C-434/01).

6. Noise

Directive 2000/14/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on the approximation of laws of the Member States relating to noise emission in the environment by equipment for use outdoors32 was due to be transposed in 3 July 2001. This directive repeals, from 3 January 2002, nine directives concerning different types of equipment. The Commission decided to bring to the Court three Member States who still had not yet adopted and notified their implementing measures, or had not done so for the whole of their territory. These Member States are Italy, Greece and the United Kingdom as far as Gibraltar is concerned.

7. Chemicals and biotechnology

Community legislation on chemicals and biotechnology covers various groups of directives relating to products or activities which have certain characteristics in common: they are technically complex, require frequent changes to adapt them to new knowledge, apply to both the scientific and industrial spheres and deal with risks for human health and environment. One of the features of Council Directive 67/548/EEC on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions relating to the classification, packaging and labelling of dangerous substances is the frequency with which it has to be amended to keep up with scientific and technical developments. Commission Directive 2001/59/EC

OJ L 162, 3.7.2000, p. 1.