The Commission needs to be made aware of the health threat posed by pollen from Ambrosia artemisiifolia, a plant which is one of the hundred most dangerous invasive alien species in Europe. Pollen from this plant cause serious allergic and respiratory complaints, often with incapacitating symptoms, whose social and individual costs are far from negligible. In some regions, the environmental and health authorities have reported that as many as 15% of the population have been affected and the scale of the problem is growing. Around fifteen Member States, applicant countries and pre-accession countries are directly affected, in some cases very seriously. The difficulty of containing the pollen and the speed with which it spreads mean that it is more urgent than ever for Europe to act to mitigate its effects.
In the light of the above, is the Commission aware of the current environmental and health situation as regards the spread of Ambrosia artemisiifolia in European countries? Will it draw up a coherent legal framework for invasive alien species? Would the Commission support the establishment of a European body responsible for the control, prevention and combating of organisms which have harmful effects on human health?