An Taisce wants to challenge the fertilizer plan in the Supreme Court


The National Trust An Taisce is trying to challenge in the High Court a government scheme to regulate the levels of nitrates that can be used as fertilizer in agricultural practices.

The action stems from the state’s approval of a plan known as the 5th Nitrates Action Program (NAP).

An Taisce claims that implementation of the plan will have detrimental effects on Irish waterways and protected sites due to excessive nitrate pollution from agricultural sources.

The adoption of the NAP will prevent Ireland from meeting its obligations under the EU Water Quality Directive.

It is claimed that nitrates are regulated at EU level by the Nitrates Directive.

It sets binding limit values ​​of 170 kg manure nitrogen per hectare and year for the amount of nitrates that can be spread.

However, the directive allows higher concentrations subject to an exemption allowing the management of up to 250 kg manure nitrogen per hectare per year.

Ireland was granted such an exemption by the EU Commission earlier this year, as has been the case on previous occasions.

Following this decision, the Minister for Housing approved and published details of the latest NAP, which An Taisce claims is illegal.

An Taisce seeks orders to repeal the NAP and an EU Commission decision allowing Ireland to derogate from it.

The NAP is invalid and violates several EU directives on environmental protection and the protection of water from pollution.

She claims that the approval of the NAP was based on an assessment that did not ensure that there would be no adverse impact on the integrity of sensitive environmental protection areas.

The assessment also did not ensure that the NAP would not cause any deterioration or endangerment of water quality, it is said.

An Taisce also claims that the derogation granted to her on the basis of the information provided to her by Ireland should be revoked.

An Taisce wants to start a judicial review process against the Minister for Housing, Heritage and Local Government, the Department’s Environmental Audit Division, Ireland and the Attorney General. The Minister of Agriculture is an announcement party of the challenge.

She also wants the court to refer the case to the European Union courts to review the validity of the decision to grant Ireland an exemption from standard EU limits.

The matter came before Justice Charles Meenan on Wednesday.

An Taisce’s James Devlin SC said the papers were sent to respondents about a month ago, who have already had some time to examine them.

A Taisce would not seek a stay, but believes that if it is right in its case, “there has been a material breach of the state’s fundamental obligations under EU law”.

It was An Taisce’s claim that this violation should not continue as the state would delay its position.

The lawyer also said his side had received a letter from the IFA and a number of farmers who wanted to join the process.

The judge said he would consider the motion for leave of absence in November in the presence of the defendants. An Taisce wants to challenge the fertilizer plan in the Supreme Court

Fry Electronics Team

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