The European Court of Justice has found that Ireland breached European Union law by taking a case to a United Nations tribunal in an effort to get Britain to close the Sellafield nuclear fuel plant.

Ireland says radioactive waste from Sellafield in northwest England is polluting the Irish Sea. It brought the case to the tribunal under UN maritime law.

A UN tribunal responded with recommendations to solve the long-running dispute.

However, the executive of the European Commission said Ireland should not have complained to the UN tribunal because the dispute concerned mainly EU agreements and should have been dealt with in European courts.

The judges warned: “A breach of this nature involves a manifest risk that the jurisdictional order laid down in the Treaties and, consequently, the autonomy of the Community legal system may be adversely affected.”

Looks like the Irish upset the ECJ, what does it take to make an international court flex its muscle in this way, wouldn’t it be great to see it rule on the substantive issue of MOX in Sellafield itself (ECJ) some day soon.
[utv] [rte] [sunday business post] [reuters]