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Case C-57/89 Commission v Germany (Wild Birds) [1991]

Facts

  • Germany was required under EU environmental protection law (Article 4(4) of Directive 79/409 on the conservation of wild birds) to preserve environments where certain wild birds lived
  • For the purpose of coastal protection, Germany built a dyke in one of these protected environments (a national park)

Issue

  • Had Germany breached article 4(4)?

Decision

  • No

Reasoning

  • Although usually, Germany would be pre-empted from acting, its interest of protecting from flooding and coastal erosion was superior to the ecological objective of the Directive
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