Dear Environment,

After several administrative appeals, we were able to obtain information about locations where glass eels were introduced in the Czech Republic. Among them are locations completely unsuitable, some of them could be even considered as animal cruelty due to their enclosed nature and eel migration needs. These are some of the problematic locations in 2016:
Bílina 1, 441001
Bílina 2, 441002
Bílina 4, 441003
Bílina 5B, 441069
Bílina 6, 441005
Bílina 8, 441006
Blšanka 2B, 441074
Cihlářský rybník, 441112
Dobranovský potok 2, 441008
Droužkovice 1-4, 441103
Droužkovice 5, 441126
Chomutovka 2, 441011
Jiříkovský potok 2, 441014
Křinice 2, 441018
Kyjov, 441109
Labe 1, 441019
Labe 10, 441026
Labe 11-12, 441027
Labe 13, 441028
Labe 2, 441020
Labe 3, 441021
Labe 4-5, 441022
Labe 6-7, 441023
Labe 8, 441024
Labe 9, 441025
Liběchovský potok, 441029
Mandava 3, 441032
Mšeno-přehrada, 441035
Nisa Lužická 1B, 441077
Nisa Lužická 2, 441037
Nisa Lužická 3, 443037
Nová, 441090
Nový rybník, 441125
Ohře 1, 441038
Ohře 10, 441044
Ohře 11, 441045
Ohře 2-3, 441039
Ohře 4-5, 441040
Ohře 6, 441041
Ohře 7, 441042
Ohře 9, 441043
Ploučnice 1, 441047
Ploučnice 1B, 441086
Ploučnice 2, 441048
Ploučnice 3, 441049
Ploučnice 4, 441063
Ploučnice 5A, 441050
Ploučnice 7, 441051
Racek, 441089
Rekreační rybník, 441053
Rožanský potok 2, 441054
Slatina, 441087
Smědá 1, 441055
Světlík, 441068
U kostela, 441110
Velkošenovský potok 2, 441064
Velký rybník, 441065
Vinduška, 441096
Wagnetrův rybník, 441118

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:

Was the introduction of eels in these areas funded or co-funded by the EU? If so, what were the conditions for financing and how were they verified? Did the Commision take any action to stop the introduction of eels into enclosed or polluted waters in the Czech Republic?

Yours faithfully,
Lukáš Blažej

Environnement

Dear Mr Blažej,

 

Please find below the responses to your questions regarding the financing
of eel introduction in the Czech Republic.

 

Was the introduction of eels in these areas funded or co-funded by the EU?

 

In order to reverse the negative trend of eel stocks, the Council has
adopted the Regulation (EC) No 1100/2007 (the Eel Regulation). This
Regulation establishes a framework for the protection and sustainable use
of the stock of European eel in Community waters (Article 1). It obliges
the Member States (MS) to establish Eel Management Plans (Article 2) and
introduce protection measures related to restocking, improvement of
habitats, transportation of silver eel from inland, combatting predators
and improving passage possibilities.

Initiatives for implementing the Eel Regulation can be supported by the
European Maritime and Fisheries Fund - EMFF Regulation (EC) No 508/2014
(Article 37.2 on direct restocking and Article 54 on aquaculture providing
environmental services). The EMFF does not refer specifically to eel
recovery or the Eel Regulation. There are indications that MS have used
the EMFF to strengthen public and private efforts related to the
protection and recovery of eel stocks.

 

The restocking of eels in the Czech waters has been co-funded under both
EFF programming period (2007-2013) and EMFF programming period (2014-2020)
under the Article 54 of the EMFF Regulation.

 

 

 

If so, what were the conditions for financing and how were they verified?

 

 

Conditions for financing are outlined in the EMFF Regulation. The Czech
Republic supports the restocking of eels under the Art 54.1.(b) –
Aquaculture providing environmental services.

 

In order to foster the development of aquaculture providing environmental
services, the EMFF may support:

 

(b) participation, in terms of costs directly related thereto, in ex-situ
conservation and reproduction of aquatic animals, within the framework of
conservation and biodiversity restoration programmes developed by public
authorities, or under their supervision;

 

The eel restocking is considered as a conservation measure under the Eel
Regulation No 1100/2007. The Czech Republic has established the Eel
Management Plan, which was approved by the European Commission, where eel
stocking is part of the conservation measures for the purpose of reducing
mortality of juveniles and recovery of the natural spatial distribution.

 

Furthermore, the Czech Managing Authority's rules for the EMFF
applicants/beneficiaries contain conditions for financing of ell
restocking projects, including suitable areas for ell restocking.

 

General conditions for monitoring, management, control and audit are
outlined in the EMFF Regulation and the Common Provision Regulation (EC)
No 1303/2013 and are fulfilled by the relevant responsible authorities.

 

 

Did the Commission take any action to stop the introduction of eels into
enclosed or polluted waters in the Czech Republic?

 

The issue of pollution of freshwaters falls under the environmental
legislation (e.g. Water Framework Directive and/or Nature Directive if an
area is established as Natura 2000 site). It is a responsibility of the
national competent authorities to enforce compliance with EU legislation.

 

Kind regards,

 

András Bartal

 

 

 

 

 

 

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