The European Commission is referring Poland to the EU Court of Justice for failing to guarantee that water pollution by nitrates is addressed effectively.
Poland has still has not designated a sufficient number of zones that are vulnerable to nitrates pollution, and measures to effectively combat nitrates pollution in these zones have not been adopted.
Almost all of Poland's waters drain into the Baltic Sea, an area which is already suffering from excess levels of nitrates. International data indicates that the Polish contribution to the overall nitrogen load in the Baltic Sea is significant, and that most of it comes from agriculture. Only a very small part of the Polish territory, however, has been designated as nitrate vulnerable zones. This is why the Commission is pressing Poland to take action and to designate more areas, and to adopt appropriate plans to deal with the problem.
In addition, the legislation and action plans that have been adopted for designated zones lack precision and have numerous shortcomings, including inadequate closed periods and insufficient limitations for manure and fertilizers application. The Commission sent a reasoned opinion on this matter on 24 November 2011, urging swift action to redress the situation, and Poland has agreed to amend its legislation, but slow progress and insufficient proposed changes have led the Commission to refer the case to the EU Court of Justice.
Thursday January 24, 2013/ European Commission/ European Union.