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IP/10/1259

Brussels, 30 September 2010

Industrial emissions: Commission asks Greece to comply with EU legislation

The Commission is asking Greece to comply with the requirements of EU legislation on industrial emissions. This follows Greece's failure to regularly inform the Commission about the implementation of the Directive. Greece has two months to respond to the reasoned opinion, failing which the Commission may refer the case to the European Court of Justice.

EU Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik said: "These reports are an essential tool for ensuring that the law is being properly implemented and that citizens and the environment are protected from the negative effects of industrial pollution."

Bad application of the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Directive

Directive 2008/1/EC concerning integrated pollution prevention and control (the IPPC Directive) ensures that authorities address the pollution of air, water and soil caused by the operation of an installation. It requires industrial and agricultural activities with a high pollution potential to have a permit, which can only be issued if certain environmental conditions are met. The Directive lays down measures designed to prevent or, where that is not practicable, to reduce emissions in order to achieve a high level of protection of the environment taken as a whole.

The IPPC Directive requires Member States to inform the Commission about the implementation of the Directive every three years. So far Greece has not sent the report covering the period 2006-2008, despite the Commission reminding the Greek authorities of their duty. A reasoned opinion has therefore been issued.

For current statistics on infringements in general see:

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/legal/implementation_en.htm

MEMO/10/457


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