Last week, the @EU_Commission released the infringements package for the month of July. And, oh boy, has it been a busy past few weeks for the EU on the #AnimalProtection front!

A #thread on this important facet of EU ( #AnimalLaw and) policy.
First off, for those who are still new to #EULaw enforcement, infringement decisions are decisions by which the EU executive "pursues legal action against Member States for failing to comply with their obligations under EU law"
In everyday parlance, this means that the European Commission intervenes by notifying an EU country in cases where that country has failed to properly enact an EU law into national law, or failed to implement such a law.
This is an important facet of EU law and policy because without proper enforcement, laws have no effect. The July series of infringement procedures in particular shows that the Commission considers #AnimalWelfare seriously.
There are different levels of intervention; from a simple notification 📬 to a full-on legal action before the EU Court of Justice (ECJ)🧑‍⚖️
We call "Infringement Procedure" the different levels this process follows 👇
🔵 The Commission first asks the Member State: "hey what's up with you not enacting/enforcing such and such provision?" This is a request for information aka a "Letter of Formal Notice."
🟠 If the Commission is not satisfied with the explanation, it issues a formal request to comply with EU law (aka a "Reasoned Opinion").

🔴 If a Member State still doesn't comply with the European Commission's request, the latter can refer the former to the ECJ.
🔴🔴 If the ECJ rules against a Member State (and yes, "if": just like with any court case, the defendant might win!), and the Member State still doesn't comply, the Commission can start a new, fast-track infringement procedure, which can lead up to a new referral to the ECJ.
What’s it like in practice?
Last week, the Commission initiated 2 new infringement procedures and released updates on another 2 ongoing procedures related to:
🐬Marine mammal bycatch ( #Dolphins)
🐇Animals (ab)used in science ( #AnimalTesting)
🐦Bird protection ( #ChasseALaGlue)
🔵Letter of Formal Notice
🇫🇷France, 🇪🇸Spain, and 🇸🇪Sweden received a Letter of Formal Notice regarding the implementation of preventive measures against bycatch of #dolphins and porpoises by fishing vessels, as per the Habitats Directive.
🇫🇷 France (again!)received another Letter of Formal Notice to correct the transposition of the Directive on the protection of animals used for scientific purposes. However, a French decree from April already remedied the lack of requirements on the origin of laboratory animals.
🟠 Reasoned Opinion
🇵🇱 Poland received a Reasoned Opinion, also regarding the transposition of the Directive on the protection of animals in science, asking that Poland enacts requirement to justify the use of specific species in procedures and staff training (inter alia).
🇫🇷 France (seriously France?!) received a Reasoned Opinion to ban nonselective bird hunting methods, such as glue for thrushes, nets and traps for skylark and pigeons, which are strictly banned under the Birds Directive for species not in “good conservation status.” #ChasseALaGlue
That’s all for this month.
Key takeaway: the Commission has limited enforcement powers – which mostly lies with Member States – but definitely makes use of them when it comes to animal protection!
All infringement decisions for July available online :
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