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Parliamentary questions
8 October 1998
WRITTEN QUESTION by María Sornosa Martínez (GUE/NGL) to the Commission

 Subject: Pego-Oliva marsh

The Commission will be aware of the background concerning the Pego-Oliva marsh owing to the previous questions tabled by the author. The repeated and flagrant breach of both Community and national law is causing irreparable damage whilst no authority with the power to stop it is taking any action.

The Pego-Oliva marsh is the second most important wetland in the Community of Valencia. It has been designated a Special Protection Zone (SPZ) pursuant to Directive 79/409/EEC(1) on birds and has been in receipt of funding from the Life Nature programme since 1992.

The repeated and flagrant violation of Community law and the law of the Autonomous Community in this field, in the form of water-extraction works (three water-extraction pumps are currently in operation despite court orders banning them) is causing more damage to this nature reserve each day since, once the land has been drained, it is intensively farmed with the massive use of pesticides, which in turn contaminate the surface and ground water. Other factors, such as the fire which broke out on 13 September 1998 in the area surrounding the marsh, are also contributing to the degradation. All this demonstrates the extraordinary speculative pressures to which the Mediterranean marshes are subject.

In view of the fact that the Commission has taken an interest in this matter, has informed the Pego municipality, which is responsible for authorising drainage work, that the funding from LIFE could be suspended and has sent representatives to visit the zone.

1. What action has the Commission taken in the meantime?

2. Can the Commission take action against the Spanish Government and the Government of the Autonomous Community for failing to enforce the law?

3. What effective measures can the Commission take to stop these infringements going unpunished and can legality be restored?

(1)OJ L 103, 25.4.1979, p. 1.

OJ C 142, 21/05/1999 (p. 68)
Zadnja posodobitev: 21. januar 2000Pravno obvestilo