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17. 3.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 82/51

(98/C 82/93) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2285/97

by John Iversen (PSE) and Kirsten Jensen (PSE) to the Commission
(2 July 1997)

Subject: Pesticides on the positive list

Can the Commission confirm that it is in the process of adding the pesticide Paraquat to the EU’s positive list?

If so, will it explain how it assesses such chemical substances?

What precautions does the Commission expect to be taken when Paraquat is used, in particular in relation to
problems concerning the environment and health and safety at work?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(12 September 1997)

Paraquat is indeed one of the active substances which are currently being evaluated under the provisions of
Directive 91/414/EEC (1) and Regulation (EEC) No 3600/92 (2) with a view to possible inclusion in a Community
positive list.

As stated in Article 5 of the Directive an active substance may only be included in Annex I to that Directive
where in the light of the current scientific and technical knowledge, it may be expected that plant protection
products containing the active substance will, consequent on application consistent with good plant protection
practice, not have any harmful effects on human or animal health or any unacceptable influence on the

Moreover, after inclusion of an active substance in Annex I of the Directive, Member States will have to review
the authorizations of the plant protection products containing that active substance in accordance with the
conditions of the inclusion and in accordance with the uniform principles (Annex VI) within a deadline to be

The evaluation of paraquat continues and reports on the conclusions concerning paraquat are still in preparation.
It will therefore be some time before a draft decision can be discussed with the Member States in the standing
committee on plant health and consequently a decision taken.

(1) Council Directive 91/414/EEC concerning the placing of plant protection products on the market − OJ L 230, 19.8.1991.
(2) Commission Regulation (EEC) 3600/92 laying down the detailed rules for the implementation of the first stage of the programme of work
referred to in Article 8(2) of Council Directive 91/414/EEC concerning the placing of plant protection products on the market −
OJ L 366, 15.12.1992.

(98/C 82/94) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2286/97

by Patricia McKenna (V) to the Commission
(2 July 1997)

Subject: Genetically modified colza

On Monday June 9 the Commission approved a genetically modified herbicide-resistant colza for market release.
The herbicide-resistant colza was manufactured by the Belgian company Plant Genetic System.

What studies, if any, were carried out on behalf of the Commission to assess the health and environmental
consequences of releasing this genetically modified organism? On what grounds did the Commission decide not
to follow the precautionary principle in this case?

Answer given by Mrs Bjerregaard on behalf of the Commission

(18 September 1997)

On 6 June 1997 the Commission adopted two decisions concerning the placing on the market of genetically
modified hybrid swede rape seeds notified by the company Plant Genetic Systems (PGS) (1).
C 82/52 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 17. 3. 98

Following the adoption of these decisions, consents will be granted by France allowing the placing on the market
of these products so that they can be used like any other traditionally bred swede rape. The placing on the market
of food and food ingredients containing, consisting of or derived from the genetically modified organisms in
question falls under Regulation (EC) No 258/97 on novel food and novel food ingredients (2).

In line with the precautionary principle on which Directive 90/220/EEC on the deliberate release into the
environment of genetically modified organisms (3) is based, the applicant provided all the necessary data and
information to assess the potential impact on human health and the environment of the release of the products in
question. The dossier submitted included studies on the seed germination ability of the transgenic B94-2 oilseed
rape line, the response of transgenic spring oilseed rape lines to agronomic inputs, monitoring residual effects in
previous transgenic oilseed rape field trials, detailed observations of insects foraging transgenic PGS oilseed
rape plants, an oilseed rape seed digestion experiment, the oilseed rape seed quality analysis of B94-2, a detailed
oil and cake characterization of a benchtop processed transgenic oilseed rape hybrid, the detailed oilseed rape
seed analysis of transgenic and non-transgenic oilseed rape, a phospho amino transfers (PAT) essay carried out
on oilfree transgenic oilseed rape seeds, and the consumption of honey produced by honey bees foraging on
transgenic oilseed rape.

The two decisions were adopted following a favourable opinion by qualified majority from the regulatory
committee established under Directive 90/220/EEC.

(1) OJ L 164, 21.6.1997.

(2) OJ L 43, 14.2.1997.
(3) OJ L 117, 8.5.1990.

(98/C 82/95) WRITTEN QUESTION E-2288/97

by Patricia McKenna (V) to the Commission
(2 July 1997)

Subject: EU funding for Dublin Port Tunnel

How much funding have the Irish authorities sought to date from the European Union for the design and
construction of the proposed Dublin Port Tunnel?

How much has been allocated to date by the EU to this project? Have any decisions for further funding been
made and are further payments likely in the foreseeable future?

Answer given by Mrs Wulf-Mathies on behalf of the Commission

(5 September 1997)

On 9 June 1995, the Commission received an application from the Irish government requesting 3.51 MECU in
assistance from the Cohesion fund for part of the pre-construction phase of the proposed Dublin port access
route. On 18 December 1995, the Commission approved a grant of 3.19 MECU from the Cohesion fund for the
project. This decision covered only the planning and design elements of the application and excluded an amount
requested for land purchase. It did not cover any type of construction expenditure.

On 30 January 1996, the Irish government requested that the amount of assistance should be increased to
5.85 MECU and on 9 December 1996 the Commission approved a modification of the initial decision which
raised the Cohesion fund contribution to the project to the amount requested. There was no change in the
elements of the project covered by this second decision (land purchase and construction were not included).

The amount of 5.85 MECU is the total committed to the project by the Commission from the Cohesion fund. An
amount of ECU 187 500 had been granted to the project before 9 June 1995 from the European regional
development fund and this funding was also used for the planning and design phase. These two amounts are the
total sum of grant aid from Community financial instruments to the project.

The Irish government has not requested any additional assistance for the design and planning phase nor for any
subsequent phase. Since no further application for assistance has been received, the question of further decisions
by the Commission about grant aid to the project does not arise.