Original language


European Union
Date of text
Type of court
International court
Court name
European Court of Justice
Seat of court
Reference number
Environmental Impact Assessments, Administrative, Property, Civil
Free tags
Land & soil
Environment gen.
Arabadjiev, A.
Rosas, A.
Lõhmus (Rapporteur), U.
Klucka, J.
Lindh, P.
This reference for a preliminary ruling concerns the interpretation of Council Directive 85/337/EEC of 27 June 1985 on the assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment. The reference was made in the course of proceedings between Ecologistas en Acción-CODA ('CODČ) and the Ayuntamiento de Madrid (Municipality of Madrid) concerning an administrative act approving various projects forming part of the refurbishment and improvement of virtually the whole of the Madrid urban ring road. The project was split into 15 sub-projects and these were treated separately for the purposes of considering the need for EIA. The ECJ held that the EIA Directive did provide for assessment of projects for the refurbishment and improvement of urban roads “either where they are projects covered by point 7(b) or (c) of Annex I to the directive, or where they are projects covered by point 10(e) or Annex II or the first indent of point 13 thereof, which are likely by virtue of their nature, size or location … to have significant effects on the environment”. Which, if any, part of Annex II governed the project was though a matter of fact to be examined by the referring Court. The ECJ added that the EIA Directive could not be circumvented by the splitting of projects. The question on certain factual elements on which the dispute in the main proceedings is based, that is to determine whether the inquiries, hearings and analyses carried out by the national authorities constitute, with respect to the projects concerned, an environmental impact assessment within the meaning of the amended directive, is left for the national court.