Irish Examiner: Government faces €4m fine for failing to implement EU directives
By Claire O’Sullivan, Friday, February 17, 2012. The European Commission is seeking to levy a once-off fine of €4m against the Government for its failure to ensure that proper environmental assessments are being carried out on Irish farming and fish farming projects.
It could be the first fine against the Irish Government ever despite its poor record on implementing environmental legislation.
The commission also threatens to impose daily fines of €33,000, but the Department of Agriculture and Environment believe the imposition of these fines now looks unlikely due to last minute work done by the departments to ensure compliance with the directive.
The European Court of Justice will make a ruling on this application for fines later this year or at the start of next year.
Ireland has one of the worst records in Europe for implementing environmental legislation. The most recent threat made against the Government related to its failure to introduce the controversial legislation governing the regulation and inspection of septic tanks.
In total, 15 cases are outstanding against the Irish Government for its failure to legislate for European environmental law. Eight of these cases have already been taken to court: The outstanding cases include:
* Failure to ensure environmental impact assessment were carried out on certain categories of agriculture and fish farming.
* Failure to regulate septic tanks.
* Failure to transpose the Birds Directive in terms of special areas of protection.
* Failure to transpose the Habitats Directive regarding species protection.
* Failure to implement the 1975 EU Waste Directive on landfills.
* Failure to provide secondary wastewater treatment.
* Failure to implement the Habitats Directive around protected bogs.
* Failure to license piggeries and poultry farms under the IPPC Directive.
* Failure to transpose the Fuel Quality Directive.
* Failure to transpose the Water Framework Directive.