Environmentalists claim work ongoing at El Algarrobico complex
IN letters three storeys high and covering 1,200 square metres, Greenpeace used 250 kilograms of black paint for its latest protest against the controversial El Algarrobico hotel.
Thirty members of the environmental group scaled the 20-floor complex, built on land inside the protected Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park, and painted the words “Illegal Hotel” on its façade.
Last May, the Junta de Andalucía regional government said steps had been taken to demolish the 411-bed hotel, built on protected land 100 metres from the beach at Carboneras in Almeria.
This was after a court had placed a stop order on the macro-project, which also includes an 18-hole golf course and 1,500 homes.
However, Greenpeace claims work is still continuing on the controversial tourist and residential complex, accusing both Junta and national government officials of a “lack of will and determination” to follow through with their promise.
“Two years have passed since we first reported this. Despite both regional and national government promises the hotel would be demolished, work has continued.
“Nobody thinks this hotel will ever disappear from this beach,” a Greenpeace spokeswoman said.
Fuensanta Coves, a spokeswoman for the environment at the regional government, has asked Greenpeace to file an official complaint if they believe work on the hotel is continuing.
“Rather than going straight to the press, if Greenpeace suspects anything untoward the group should go through the correct channels and report the matter to the judiciary.”
She also confirmed the hotel will be demolished once the land has been expropriated by the government in its land-grab scheme to protect the country’s coast.
A spokesman for Azata del Sol, the developer behind the complex, denied work on the hotel is ongoing.
“As a consequence of the stop order, we could not waterproof the terraces of the hotel nor could we fit window panes that face the sea and the marine breezes.
“Damp has caused damage to the ceilings, floors, wood fittings and important metallic elements.
Damage has been caused as a result of the judicial ruling against Azata del Sol,” Antonio Baena said.
The Cabo de Gata-Níjar Natural Park is western Europe’s largest marine and territory nature reserve, covering 460 square-kilometres.