Lawyer for Environmental Law
With our law firm you will receive competent legal advice for all areas of Environmental Law. This ranges from support and representation in court in cases of classical environmental law to immission control law and nvironmental aspects of building and planning law. You can engage us as a lawyer for Environmental Law in Traunstein and the region as well as nationwide.
Nitrate in drinking water
Although it has been known for decades that the nitrate content on German agricultural land is increased as a result of overfertilisation by agriculture, the German government is doing far too little to reduce the nitrate content and improve drinking water protection. Agriculture Minister Julia Klöckner and Environment Minister Svenja Schulze continue to play for time.
As early as June 2018, following an action brought by the Brussels authority before the European Court of Justice, the Federal Republic of Germany was ordered to ensure a reduction in the nitrate content of drinking water, as this is excessive and contravenes current EU law. Although the Federal Government has already tightened the rules for farmers in 2017, from Brussels’ point of view they are not sufficient. It is to be feared that compliance with this regulation will be insufficiently monitored and that farmers who violate it will have nothing to fear as a result.
Now that farmers in Germany are resisting even stricter fertiliser requirements, it is to be expected that the Minister of Agriculture, Ms. Klöckner, will give in to the farmers and refuse to implement the stricter EU regulations. Clientele policy continues to take precedence over the interests of our citizens’ health. According to a Danish study, the limit of 50 mg/l nitrate stipulated in the German Drinking Water Ordinance is still excessive, as much lower values are already associated with an increased risk of colon cancer. A maximum load of 37.5 mg/litre is required for drinking water.
A map of Germany published by the newspaper Welt, shows a high nitrate load, especially in the north and south of the republic, of up to 200 kg nitrate/ha. The load is therefore two to three times the value of the permissible limit values. Especially the south of Bavaria is particularly contaminated. It is astonishing that although the catastrophe that is looming in our drinking water due to the increased nitrate pollution, neither the Greens nor the BUND Naturschutz have so far initiated legal action against the Federal Government and the state governments.
Apparently, diesel driving bans currently make it possible to achieve a better presence in the press. The situation is quite comparable to the pollution of the seas by plastic waste. This too has been known for decades. Apparently, the German government recognized the danger here only a year ago and is willing to intervene.
Too much nitrate pollution? Your environmental lawyer will support you!
You can ask your regional water supplier about the contamination in your drinking water. The values should be published on the water supplier’s website under the keyword Measurement results. Just for comparison: The nitrate load at our regional water procurement association WBV Kammer-Rettenbach (Traunstein) is only 11.2 mg/liter. The low nitrate contamination was achieved by an agreement with the farmers concerned, according to which they will refrain from fertilising in the water protection area in return for payment of compensation. However, there are also farmers in Upper Bavaria who refuse to comply with the fertilizer ordinance. The district offices are obviously powerless against such farmers and see no means of action, as the necessary laws are lacking.
If the nitrate level in your drinking water is excessive and the health-endangering limit values are exceeded, do not hesitate to take legal action against the state or federal government before the administrative court. If the citizens do nothing against the pollution of the drinking water, nothing will happen on the part of the politicians.
Lawyer for Environmental Law at the law firm Warneke
We are a law firm that has been advising our clients regionally and nationally in Traunstein for more than three decades on all legal issues concerning consumer protection. With an environmental lawyer, we are an experienced partner for all Environmental Law issues.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.