29 January 1999


&#8226 THE EU Commission is taking the UK government to court for its alleged failure to protect water sources from pollution by nitrates. It claims there are a number of weaknesses in the UKs implementation of the 1991 Nitrates Directive, in particular that the monitoring applies only to drinking water sources, rather than all surface and ground water.

&#8226 ATTEMPTS by the German EU presidency to freeze spending on agriculture at current levels until 2006 failed this week, when other member states foreign and finance ministers rejected the plan.

Instead, the general affairs council, meeting in Brussels on Monday, agreed to keep a close watching brief on future spending.

&#8226 TWO new education initiatives were announced this week by the European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA).

The first involves teaching material, to be sent to primary school children in all 15 member states, showing the breadth and diversity of EU agriculture. The second is a month-long training programme for future farm leaders.

&#8226 THE fourth case of BSE this year has been identified in France, in a dairy cow born in July 1994, bringing the total number of cases to 53.

In keeping with government policy, the entire herd has been destroyed.

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