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9. 10.

98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 310/65

Given the importance of the onion sector, its specific features, strong regional impact and the seasonal nature of
production, which has a considerable influence on producers’ incomes, does the Commission not consider that
the possibility of extending Annex II should be examined, in order to prevent discrimination vis-à-vis other types
of vegetables?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission

(31 March 1998)

The common organisation of the fruit and vegetable markets covers more than one hundred products, most of
which are seasonal and of great regional importance.

Under Council Regulation (EEC) No 1035/72 of 18 May 1972 on the common organisation of the market in fruit
and vegetables (1), some products were covered by an intervention scheme, but many did not qualify for support.
The reform adopted by Council Regulation (EC) No 2200/96 of 28 October 1996 on the common organisation of
the market in fruit and vegetables (2) provides for a reduction in the use of intervention by limiting the quantities
which can be withdrawn from the market, and for a reduction in the intervention price.

Financial assistance is now also available through the operational funds and enables producer organisations to
pay withdrawal compensation for products not listed in Annex II to Regulation (EC) No 2200/96.

The operational funds can also be used in the context of operational programmes to improve the marketing of
products or to concentrate market supply, among other things.

Onion producer organisations can thus qualify for withdrawal compensation, which they could not do before the
reform of the common organisation of the market in fruit and vegetables.

The Commission does not therefore plan to widen Annex II and considers that a solution to most of the problems
in the sector can be found in the new instruments set up under the reform.

(1) OJ L 118, 20.5.1972.

(2) OJ L 297, 21.11.1996.

(98/C 310/85) WRITTEN QUESTION E-0449/98

by Carlo Ripa di Meana (GUE/NGL) to the Commission
(27 February 1998)

Subject: Urban waste in the Lombardy region

In winter 1996 the city of Milan stopped dumping solid urban waste at the Cerro dump. Since then a percentage
of the urban waste has been dumped outside the province and the region.

Milan city council has frequently said it did not dump waste outside the region and that more than 30% of the
waste collected was sorted.

The special commissioner for the waste emergency has authorized the former Maserati site as a final solution to
the Milan waste emergency. According to press reports the disposal of waste outside the region, which began two
years ago, is still going on.

Is it true that the collection of sorted waste, and not just the sorting of portions of waste has reached the
percentage indicated?

Do means exist for identifying the compostable proportion that demonstrate actual disposal at composting sites?
C 310/66 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 9. 10. 98

Is the Commissioner responsible for the environment interested in finding out the real situation so as not to
compromise the credibility of the guidelines behind the European rules on recycling?

Why is the former Maserati plant not used to stabilize and recycle the humid proportion of the sorted waste?

Which urban waste − and how much − is disposed of outside the province and the region?

Will the European Parliament set up a committee of inquiry into the ‘Milan’ case in order to restore credibility to
sorted waste collection?

Answer given by Mrs Bjerregaard on behalf of the Commission

(26 March 1998)

The Commission does not have any specific information concerning the aspects of the separate collection
schemes in Milan to which the Honourable Member refers, except for the news which appeared in the press.

The Commission is presently assessing the new Italian legislation implementing Directive 91/156/EEC on
waste (1), Directive 91/689/EEC on hazardous waste (2) and Directive 94/62/EC on packaging and packaging
waste (3). Infringement proceedings for non-compliance of the Italian legislation (decree 22/1997) with certain
aspects of these directives were started in 1997.

The Honourable Member refers to separate collection and recycling of municipal solid waste. Directive 94/62/EC
provides for recycling and recovery targets of packaging waste to be achieved by 30 June 2001 and as a
consequence requires Member States to set up separate collection schemes for such wastes. Directive
91/157/EEC (1) requires Member States to set up separate collection schemes for batteries and accumulators
containing certain dangerous substances. As for municipal waste, there is no other mandatory provision
concerning separate collection and recycling of waste, although the Community strategy for waste manage-
ment (4) invokes material recycling, including composting, as the preferred waste recovery method over other
recovery methods (such as energy recovery). Separate collection schemes are therefore warmly welcomed by the
Commission. The Commission does not however see a violation of Community law in the fact that certain rates
of recycling have not yet been achieved, particularly since the targets of Directive 94/62/EC are to be achieved by
the year 2001. The Commission is convinced that the material recycling of waste, including composting,
represents a valid solution for waste recovery and believes that organisational or technical difficulties which
arise in specific situations, such as that mentioned by the Honourable Member, are not a valid reason to
re-consider the hierarchy of waste management methods established by the Community.

The Commission does not have information on why biodegradable waste is not treated in the ex-Maserati area
and on how much waste is disposed of outside the province and the region. In this regard, the Commission
informs the Honourable Member that Italy has not complied with the requirement concerning waste management
planning laid down in Article 7 of Directive 91/156/EEC and therefore the Commission does not know how
waste is disposed of or recovered in the Lombardy region (infringement proceedings for failure to comply with
Community provisions on waste management planning have been initiated by the Commission).

Concerning the identification forms for biodegradable waste, Article 15 of decree 22/1997 requires that waste be
accompanied by an identification form which gives indications on the destination of the waste transported.
According to the information available at the Commission, this provision is not yet applied since the Italian
authorities have not yet produced the identification form. In addition, this provision does not apply to municipal
solid waste transported by public collectors. The Commission is presently assessing whether this complies with
the corresponding Community legislation Council Regulation (EEC) No 259/93 of 1 February 1993 on the
supervision and control of shipments of waste within, into and out of the Community (5).

(1) OJ L 78, 26.3.1991.

(2) OJ L 377, 31.12.1991.
(3) OJ L 365, 31.12.1994.
(4) COM(96) 399 final.
(5) OJ L 30, 6.2.1993.