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Parliamentary questions
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6 March 2019
Question for written answer E-001209-19
to the Council
Rule 130
Frédérique Ries (ALDE) , Louis Michel (ALDE)

 Subject:  Insufficient progress in reducing underwater noise pollution
 Answer in writing 

In January 2019, a group of NGOs specialising in the protection of marine life warned that most Member States were probably not going to honour their commitment to reduce marine noise pollution by 2020(1).

Levels of man-made noise pollution are constantly rising in a number of European seas and oceans, caused in particular by the extraction of natural resources, commercial traffic and military activities.

This causes serious, often irreversible damage to marine ecosystems: dolphins are stranded on our beaches, krill and other key links in the marine food chain are dying at faster rates and more time is needed to replenish fish stocks.

Given that in 2018 the Commission also expressed doubts about the ability of Member States to meet their 2020 targets to reduce marine noise pollution, in the light of their very different aspirations(2), can the Council say:
1. Does it agree with the findings of the NGO report entitled ‘Reduce the Noise!’?
2. Does it intend to encourage a review of Member States’ programmes of measures to effectively combat underwater noise pollution?
3. Does it see a need to draw up a European strategy to bring about a substantial reduction in underwater pollution?

(1)OceanCare, IFAW, Seas at risk and NRDC, ‘Reduce the noise! European countries’ failure to address marine noise pollution’, January 2019.
(2)Report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council assessing Member States’ programmes of measures under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, COM(2018) 562 final.

Original language of question: FR 
Last updated: 2 April 2019Legal notice