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Europe leads the fight against air pollution on

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Europe leads the fight against air pollution on

Member states of the European rules on air pollution down beside her continue to lay, must be for the European Court of Justice to justify. Our country needs urgent intervention.

“This Commission wants to bring Europe closer to its citizens. Otherwise, they failed. The best way to achieve that goal, they will be better protect. Economic and police, but also in terms of quality of life.’

The European commissioner for Environment, Karmenu Vella, will find that he has good reasons the environment ministers of nine member states are urged on the mat to cry. Germany, France, Great Britain, Spain, Italy, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia and the Czech republic still have a week time to include additional measures on the table for a better air quality. If not, they are for the European Court of Justice. Last year, the Commission said Poland and Bulgaria are already in default. The Bulgarians were convicted – though they got no punishment – and about a month to speak to the judges in Luxembourg from Poland.

The countries exceed for years, the European standards for the concentration of fine dust (PM10) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). The patience of the Commission touches on. ‘There were during the meeting positive suggestions are made, but which were on the first glance insufficient to the broader picture to change, ” says Vella. “Without new and effective measures will the air quality standards until after 2020 to be exceeded.’

The consequences are becoming better mapped. The European environment Agency calculated last year that in the EU each year 400,000 people a premature death as a result of the pollution. The annual economic cost is 20 billion estimated.

Vella points out that Europe funds made available to the problems at the source. In addition, member states have enough time to draw up action plans. The standards for fine dust have been in effect since 2005, which for NO2 since 2010.

Too long with impunity

Noteworthy: Belgium, provisionally preserved, but also our country needs urgent intervention. “Belgium is the next country on the fingers will be tapped’, predicts Joeri Thijs of Greenpeace. Two years ago, the Commission opened the infringement procedure against our country, the next step is the summons. Greenpeace is also planning on going to court. The environmental organization wants the Walloon and the Flemish government subpoena. Previously had Brussels citizens and the ngo Earth Client has already done the same with Brussels.

“The way the court works,” says Margherita Tolotto of the European environmental bureau, the largest network of citizens ‘ initiatives around environmental issues. ‘It happens everywhere in Europe and the complainants usually get right.” Tolotto hopes that the European Commission is really the forcing, wants to execute. ‘Because the problem involves the whole Union. In 23 of the 28 member states, the rules are violated. 130 cities struggle with air pollution. The rules are much too long with impunity violated.’

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