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C 136 E/180 Official Journal of the European Communities EN 8.5.

2001

The special meeting of the European Council in Tampere in October 1999, on the creation of an area of
freedom, security and justice, identified priority areas for the approximation of sanctions. Conclusion 23
calls for legislation to be adopted that would foresee severe sanctions against the crime of trafficking in
human beings and economic exploitation of migrants, and conclusion 48  at least in the first instance 
limits efforts to agree on common sanctions to a number of sectors of particular relevance. Fines for
excessive speed on public roads do not appear among these.

(1) OJ C 216, 10.7.1998.

(2001/C 136 E/210) WRITTEN QUESTION E-3094/00


by Glyn Ford (PSE) to the Commission

(4 October 2000)

Subject: Thermonuclear fusion programme evaluation

Will the Commission publish an outline CV of all of the members of the panel responsible for the recently
published 5-year evaluation of the sub-programme on thermonuclear fusion within the Euratom Frame-
work Programme so as to clarify their independence in this matter?

Could the Commission also indicate how these persons were nominated and selected for this task?

Answer given by Mr Busquin on behalf of the Commission

(9 November 2000)

The composition of all the panels of experts who have carried out the five-year assessments of the
framework programmes (FPs) and specific programmes including the subprogramme on fusion has been
made available on the Cordis web-site since 24 April 2000 (www.cordis.lu/fp5/panels.htm). The panel lists
include an outline curriculum vitae of all the experts.

The members of the panels were appointed by the Commission on the basis of suggestions by the Member
States. The criteria for the selection of the highly qualified experts panels included an independence
criterion, i.e. not be or have been programme contractors, members of or experts to any programme
committee during the assessed period.

(2001/C 136 E/211) WRITTEN QUESTION E-3095/00


by María Sornosa Martínez (PSE) to the Commission

(4 October 2000)

Subject: Expansion of Manises airport in Valencia (Spain)

The Spanish Airports and Air Navigation agency (AENA) has finalised a master plan under which the
airport at Valencia would be expanded, with a view to tripling its existing operating capacity. This
expansion, which will allow for as many as 100 flights to be handled every hour, will also triple the
current noise pollution level at the airport, which is located in the vicinity of the municipalities of Manises
and Quart de Poblet. Furthermore, it could have other harmful effects on the environment, including soil
erosion and deterioration, gas emissions, and an increased incidence of sewage and dumping.

In accordance with the provisions of Directive 85/337/EEC (1) (as amended by Directive 97/11/EC (2)) on
the assessment of the effects of certain projects on the environment, the nature of the planned work is
such that an environmental impact assessment must be carried out, in line with Annex I of the
aforementioned Directive, which refers to airports with a runway length of 2 100 m or more. However,
the master plan submitted by AENA contains no more than a brief paragraph entitled ‘Study of the impact
8.5.2001 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 136 E/181

of the airport on the surrounding area’, which is merely descriptive and does not furnish the list of
information required of the developer under Article 5(3) of the Directive. Furthermore, the master plan
fails to consider the selection criteria set out in Annex III of the Directive. Besides neglecting to detail the
adverse effects that the future airport will have on the neighbouring communities in terms of noise
pollution and environmental pollution, the master plan even goes as far as to admit that a thorough
environmental study into gas emissions will be required. That study has not been conducted, nor has a
date for it been set.

In addition, in accordance with Article 6(1) and Article 6(2) of the environmental impact Directive, the
developer is obliged to enter into a period of consultation with the authorities and public concerned
within a reasonable time. AENA has ignored this rule as well. It published the written material and plan in
early August, thereby giving the municipal authorities and others concerned a mere 30 days (coinciding
with an office closing period) in which to study them and submit statements thereon.

The ICAO is due to meet in the near future to review and toughen up its noise standards, which will
become binding in 2002, whilst in its communication 99/640 the Commission stated its intention to
introduce Community legislation to combat noise pollution.

In view of these aspects, does the Commission not take the view that, in respect of Directive 85/337/EEC,
the plan to expand Manises airport has clearly breached the rules governing environmental impact
assessment?

(1) OJ L 175, 5.7.1985, p. 40.


(2) OJ L 73, 14.3.1997, p. 5.

Answer given by Mrs Wallström on behalf of the Commission

(10 November 2000)

The Honourable Member has drawn the Commission’s attention to the impact on the environment of the
master plan for extending Valencia Airport, and, in this instance, to the possible improper implementation
of Council Directive 85/337/EEC of 27 June 1985 on the assessment of the impact of certain public and
private projects on the environment.

It must be noted that Directive 85/337/EEC was amended by Council Directive 97/11/EC of 3 March 1997.
However, under Article 3(2) of Directive 97/11/EC the provisions of the unamended version of
Directive 85/337/EEC shall apply to any request for authorisation submitted before 14 March 1999.

It should in any case be noted that, neither in its previous, nor in its present, version following amendment
does Directive 85/337/EEC provide for any application to plans which do not constitute an authorisation
as such conferring the right on the prime customer to implement a project as defined by the Directive.

In this instance the master plan at issue does not therefore seem to be covered by Directive 85/337/EEC.

(2001/C 136 E/212) WRITTEN QUESTION E-3100/00


by Paulo Casaca (PSE) to the Commission

(4 October 2000)

Subject: Application of Council Regulations Nos 1260/99 and 1263/99

Potential beneficiaries of structural aid under the Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (FIFG),
pursuant to Regulations 1260/99 (1) and 1263/99 (2) have drawn my attention to the fact that the
Portuguese authority responsible for implementing these regulations in Portugal, namely the Ifadap, has
required applicants to provide a real or bank guarantee for an amount which is greater than the subsidy
itself.