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Parliamentary questions
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13 March 2019
Question for written answer E-001333-19
to the Commission
Rule 130
David McAllister (PPE)

 Subject:  Implementation of Directive 91/676/EEC in Germany
 Answer in writing 

Directive 91/676/EEC of 12 December 1991 lays down measures to limit the pollution of waters by nitrates from agricultural sources. In order to transpose this directive into national law, the Federal Republic of Germany first enacted a regulation on fertilisers in 1996, which was amended in 2017. From the Commission’s point of view, the regulation fails adequately to transpose the directive into national law.

1. For reasons of climate protection, a build-up of humus is desirable (sequestration of atmospheric CO2 in the soil humus), but this is only possible if the sites in question are supplied with sufficient amounts of nitrogen. How does the Commission assess the risk that the still permitted practice of nitrogen fertilisation may hinder this build-up of humus or even lead to humus degradation and thus to a loss of soil fertility?

2. In the Commission's view, is the Federal Republic’s nitrate-monitoring network sufficient in terms of its density, spatial distribution and nature (i.e. no measuring wells near the surface that would distort values) to obtain reliable values for the real nitrate pollution of the first groundwater body?

3. Given existing building legislation, many businesses are unlikely to be able to build the slurry storage facilities required by 1.1.2020. Can the Commission suggest a solution to this problem, possibly involving an extension of the deadline?

Original language of question: DE 
Last updated: 3 April 2019Legal notice