Punishing the polluter

The European Commission (EC) is taking the UK and France to court for violating European Union (EU) pollution laws. The EC claims that the UK has failed to prevent water pollution from nitrates and France has not come up with adequate plans to deal with waste and hazardous materials.

Under EU laws, member states should have developed schemes to identify areas at risk from nitrate pollution and monitor nitrate levels in surface and groundwater before 1994. The Commission claims that many regions in France still have no measures for dealing with clinical waste or hazardous chemicals such as polychlorinated biphenols ( pcb s), and some regions do not have adequate waste management plans.