Eurocámara: 140106 E­012287­/ 2013 Pollution on Gibraltar’s Western Beach

Pregunta de Sir Graham Watson (ALDE)

Respuesta del Comisario Potočnik


Question 28 October 2013 Sir Graham Watson (ALDE)

Subject: Pollution on Gibraltar’s Western Beach  

Western Beach in north Gibraltar borders Spain and continues to suffer from poor water quality. In Parliamentary Question E­9298/2010, the Commission’s attention was drawn to the pollution there and to the fact that increased water contamination was the result of a redirected storm drain from the Spanish border town of La Linea. In the Commission’s response, it expressed its willingness to facilitate the resolution of the problem.

1. In light of this, has the Commission sought a commitment from Spain to end such discharges along the coast in question?

2. Is the Commission aware of continued sewage discharges from La Linea?

3. What further action does the Commission intend to take to encourage Spain to meet its obligation to end this kind of effluent discharge, as required under Union law?

Answer 6 January 2014 Commisioner Potočnik

A complaint has been registered on pollution at the Western Beach (nr CHAP (2011)916). In addition, the Parliament accepted a petition regarding bathing water quality at the Western Beach (nr 258/2011).

Following the complaint and the petition, the Commission has requested information from Spain on the water pollution at the Western Beach. According to the information provided by the Spanish authorities in the context of the abovementioned investigation, the problems of the sewage systems that could influence the quality status of the beach concerned, including discharges as those mentioned by the Honourable Member, have been tackled.

In October 2013, the Commission requested updated information on these issues including data from this year’s bathing water season from Spain. No information has been received yet by the Commission.

Moreover, the Commission has asked the United Kingdom to provide information on other possible causes of the pollution at the beach concerned.

The Commission would also note that it has raised its concerns on the lack of a treatment system for waste water in Gibraltar in a letter of formal notice addressed to the United Kingdom, issued on 20/06/2013.

Once Spain and the United Kingdom have replied, the Commission will be in a position to decide on how to proceed.

140106 EP – Q G Watson (ALDE-LibDems) on Pollution on Gibraltar’s Western Beach, A Com Environment Potočnik E-012287-13