D8 Motorway – 0807 Section. Complaint for the violation of the European Natural Protection Legislation. Supplementary information (For Site Related Aspects of Nature Complaints)
Study | 30 May 2003
Tel.: +420 222 51 38 59
E-mail: pavel.pribyl at hnutiduha.cz
Member States concerned
Czech Republic – accession country
NUTS II Northwest
1) Does the case have any direct link to Community nature legislation?
2) If yes, to which directive ?
79/409 (the Birds Directive) Yes
92/43 (the Habitats Directive) Yes
Or which other legislation ?
3) Give a clear description of the subject of the complaint (max. 1/2 page)
The construction of section 0807 of D8 motorway, which is part of the
Prague “Dresden motorway strip, will harm interests protected by the
signatures of the Community. A significant part of the route (the
section heading from the foot of the Krusne hory (sometimes referred to
internationally as the Ore Mountains), over the “Naklerovska”
highlands, to the border at a point neighboring the Spicak peak) runs
through a proposed area for protection of birds: SPA Vychodni Krusne
hory (referred to below as the Eastern Krusne hory SPA). Section 0807
thus shatters a region that should logically be a part of the Natura
2000 network. During Natura 2000 mapping, 12 bird species protected per
annex 1 of the Birds Directive were identified here, as well as other
protected bird species, like the following nesting birds:, red kite
(Milvus milvus), black grouse (Tetrao tetrix), black stork (Ciconia
nigra), corncrake (Crex crex), great grey shrike (Lanius excubitor),
whinchat (Saxicola rubetra), red-breasted flycatcher (Ficedula parva),
quail (Coturnix coturnix) a red-backed shrike (Lanius collurio ), hen
harrier (Circus cyaneus), common snipe (Gallinago gallinago) and 1
specie of migrant bird protected by the Birds directive: kingfisher
(Alcedo atthis), as well as several priority habitats under the
Habitats Directive.Prirodni park Vychodni Krusne hory (called “the
Eastern Krusne Hory Nature Park” below) in the plateau of the Krusne
Hory mountains will be particularly affected, as well as the slopes of
the Krusne Hory and the Rybny and Hranicni Potok (streams) on the
border with Germany (see map annexes 3.1. and 3.2.).
4) Have you already contacted the responsible authorities of your Member
State concerning your complaint case
No — Please explain why you have not contacted your national authorities before addressing the European Commission :
Yes — Which one :
Environmental NGOs have long and systematically
had an interest in the D8 – 0807 case, and have participated in all the
proceedings that led up to the location of the construction to the
Eastern Krusne Hory Nature Park (land use permit was issued on Oct 11,
2000, now indivudal construction permit proceedings are under way. Over
the course of these processes, the associations warned the relevant
state authorities several times that the selected motorway route will
harm nature protection interests. This included the following processes:
1) The environmental impact assessment (EIA) process. The association
Deti Zeme (“Children of the Earth,” referred to by its Czech name
below) submitted an official complaint on the course of the EIA process
to the Ministry of Environment. The contents of that complaint are
described in point 11 of this one.
2) The proceedings regarding an impact on the “character of the
landscape” (which is protected by Czech law) in the Eastern Krusne Hory
Nature Park. Deti Zeme appealed to the Czech Ministry of Environment,
and later to the Minister himself, against the decision that agreed
3) Proceedings on assent to altering major landscape elements along the
motorway route. Deti Zeme appealed to the Czech Ministry of
Environment, and later to the Minister himself, against the decision of
assent for construction.
4) Land-use proceedings. Deti Zeme appealed to the Ministry for Local
Development against the decision on the placement of the motorway
Answer / Results in brief
Re 1) The complaint was rejected. Although the Ministry admitted that
the selection of the motorways corridor took place in conflict with
the EIA act, it drew no conclusions from this fact as far as stopping
preparation of the unlawfully selected motorway route was concerned.
Re 2) Both the appeal and the complaint to the minister were rejected.
The ministry did not accept as valid the organization’s complaint that
its rights had been infringed when it was not allowed to participate in
important negotiations despite having the legal right to do so. Nor did
it accept the objection that the motorway route to which assent had
been given was criticized by Agentura ochrany prirody a krajiny (called
the “Nature and Landscape Protection Agency” below), which is the
Ministry of Environment’s very own expert association. (For more on
this, see 12.3. of this complaint.)
Re 3) Both the appeal and the complaint to the minister were rejected.
The ministry did not accept the majority of the association’s proposals
intended to protect significant landscape elements (which are a type of
landscape element specifically defined and given specific protection in
Czech conservation law) along the the motorway route (waterflows,
forest complexes, etc.).
Re 4) The Ministry for Local Development found the appeal of Deti Zeme
to be founded in fact, and annulled the land-use decision. One of the
reasons for annulling this decision was the absence of the
international assessment of the the motorways environmental impact
that the Czech Republic was to have performed in conjunction with
Germany on the basis of a bilateral international agreement (signed on
Oct 24, 1996, valid from Jan 2, 1999). In the new proceedings, however,
this defect was not remedied, and the land-use decision was again
issued without a cross-boundary EIA. For this reason, Deti Zeme
submitted a new request for the decision to be annulled, but this time
without success. The request was rejected with the justification that
the Ministry of Environment had, together with the German side, agreed
not to perform an international EIA on D8 motorway.
Please add if possible copies of the correspondence.
Detailled correspondence (in Czech) in Annexes no. 4.1.-4.4.
5.1. Are you aware if any EC financing is directly involved (e.g. structural funds, Life, etc.) :
5.2. If yes please
give details : ISPA funds are to contribute roughly EUR 40 mil. to the
project. A loan from the European Investment Bank, from which the Czech
republic is requesting loan of EUR 400 mil. loan for the whole D8
motorway project, is also to help cover the project costs.
6.1. GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF THE SITE(S) AFFECTED
Name of Site(s): The proposed Eastern Krusne Hory
SPA + the non SPA segment amidst of it (SPA borders were intentionally
proposed in the way, so that SPA doesn’t get in the direct cont