Irish Water

Die Anfrage wurde abgelehnt durch Generaldirektion Umwelt.

Dear Environment,

Under the right of access to documents in the EU treaties, as developed in Regulation 1049/2001, I am requesting documents which contain the following information:

1) Any communications between DG Env and Irish authorities in relation to Irish Water in 2014.

2) Any communications between DG Env and Irish Water directly.

Yours faithfully,


Generaldirektion Umwelt

1 Attachment

Dear Sir,


Thank you for your request for access to documents.

Unfortunately you have not indicated your postal address that is required
for registering and handling your request in line with the procedural
requirements. Please send us your full postal address and your first and
last names at your earliest convenience. Pending your reply, we reserve
the right to refuse the registration of your request.

You may, of course, use directly the electronic form for entering your


Best regards,


DG Environment Access to Documents Team

European Commission
Directorate-General for Environment
Unit D.4 – Governance, Information & Reporting

BU-9 02/009
B-1160 Brussels/Belgium


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Dear Environment,

I don't see where in Regulation 1049/2001 I am obliged to give my postal address, can you point it out to me?

I look forward to a response in the time period prescribed.

Yours faithfully,

Gavin Sheridan

Generaldirektion Umwelt


Dear Mr Sheridan,


With respect to your questions regarding the provision of a postal address
(copied below), please find our explanations below.


On 1 April 2014, the postal address became a mandatory feature for the
purpose of introducing a request for access to documents.


The decision to ask for a postal address from applicants for access to
documents was triggered by the following considerations:


·       The need to obtain legal certainty as regards the date of receipt
of the reply by the applicant under Regulation 1049/2001. Indeed, as
foreseen by Article 297 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European
Union (TFEU), […] decisions which specify to whom they are addressed,
shall be notified to those to whom they are addressed and shall take
effect upon such notification. Replies triggering the possibility for
administrative or judicial redress are therefore transmitted via
registered mail with acknowledgement of receipt. This requires an
indication of a valid postal address by the applicant;


·       The need to direct the Commission's scarce resources first of all
to those requests which have been filed by "real" applicants. With only a
compulsory indication of an e-mail address, applicants can easily
introduce requests under an invented identity or under the identity of a
third person. Asking for a postal address helps the Commission to protect
the administration, as well as other citizens and legal persons, from


·       For similar reasons, asking for a compulsory indication of a
postal address enables the Commission services to verify whether Article
6(3) of the Regulation, on voluminous requests, is being evaded by
introducing several requests under different identities. Indeed, in its
Ryanair judgment, the General Court confirmed that Article 6(3) cannot be
evaded by splitting the application into a number of applications. The
Commission would like to point out that, in 2012/2013, it received some 57
confirmatory requests from what it suspects to be one single applicant
operating under 13 different identities;


·       Knowing whether the applicant is an EU resident in the sense of
Article 2(1) of Regulation 1049/2001 is a precondition for the purpose of
correctly applying the exception in Article 4(1)(b) of Regulation
1049/2001 (protection of the privacy and integrity of the individual),
which has to be interpreted in accordance with Data Protection Regulation
45/2001. Article 9 of Regulation 45/2001 requires the adequacy of the
level of protection afforded by the third country or international
organisation when transmitting personal data to third-country residents or
legal persons. It follows that, in case of requests for documents which
include personal data, the correct application of the data protection
rules cannot be ensured in the absence of a postal address enabling the
Commission to ascertain that the minimum data protection standards will be


All of these considerations show that the request for and the consequent
processing of a postal address is not only appropriate but also strictly
necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest
within the meaning of Article 5 (a) of Data Protection Regulation 45/2001,
namely providing a smooth and effective access to documents.


We therefore kindly reiterate our request to you to provide a full postal
address, so we can duly register and handle your request. Please note
that, once we receive your postal address, we will register your request
for access as an initial application for access to documents in the
meaning of Article 6(1) of Regulation 1049/2001. The deadline for handling
your initial request shall run as from the moment of registration of your
request following the submission of your postal address.


Thank you in advance.


Kind regards,



DG Environment Access to Documents Team

European Commission

Directorate-General for Environment

Unit D.4 – Governance, Information & Reporting


BU-9 02/009

B-1160 Brussels/Belgium






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