16 Apr, 2009 @ 14:41
1 min read

Green groups unite against Zapatero


SPAIN’S biggest charities have declared war over the Government’s ‘failing’ environmental policy.

Among their main complaints is the confusion and hypocrisy of Spain’s coastal law, as highlighted in the Olive Press over recent issues.

The group of NGOs, including Greenpeace, Ecologistas en Accion and SEO/Birdlife, are highly critical of the Government’s plans to unite both the Agriculture and Environment ministries that “would put the sheep among the wolves”.

They are also furious that the Government is apparently using the current economic crisis to soften existing environmental legislation.

In particular, they singled out the delayed demolition of Hotel Algarrobico, which was built on a beach in a national park in Almería.

Greenpeace protested inside the national park for the fourth time earlier this year and have now teamed up with the NGOs to deliver their condemnation of Government policy.

The environmental groups have also criticised the Coastal Law reform, which prevents new residential zones being built within 100 metres of the seashore.

They say that the 1988 law is being applied haphazardly throughout the country by local authorities.

The result is many old properties are being knocked down while construction of two luxury villas just 26 metres from the shore in Mijas (as reported exclusively in the Olive Press) are going ahead.

Last issue we reported how Brussels had voted to punish Spain heavily over its continual flaunting of European environmental laws.

MEPs voted in favour of a report by Danish politician Margrete Auken which highlighted the destruction of its coasts as well as human rights abuses.


  1. Whether central or local government, Spain has to get it’s house in order, (sorry about the pun) the Auken report made that very clear. But is the EU a lion without teeth? or afraid to use them? perhaps the socialists and conservatives have had it to easy for too long, in Spain and other parts of Europe. One would hope the Olive Press will make informed opinions on where the undecided votes should go on the June 7th elections, otherwise, alas they will unused and be wasted. People have to live somewhere, and to knock down homes or even that ghastly hotel in Carboneras, would probably spoil the environment more, Spain just needs a zero tolerance of urban abuse in the future, and the leadership to ensure it.

  2. Spain is corrupt in most everything, if something is done in local government or council it is because someone in power is making money out of it. The fact that Spain is not sorting out the problems involved with the ‘Ley de costas’ is and will damage the countries economy even more but one of the problems in sorting this all out is that those who are supposed to be sorting it out are a lot of the ones that where behind a lot of it being broken in many cases of late, so they are not going to let anyone dig into many of the problems of late, until the corrupt people are cleaned out this will not be sorted… and it goes all the way to the top, so don’t hold your breath. Spain is in a shambles with many things at the moment and all because there is no effort made in fixing anything, there is no clear, defined or strong direction from the top.

    The EU parliament and it’s penalties to EU law breakers are useless, again this is a very large bunch of people who have their noses in a trough and are only interested in snorting in as much as they can for themselves, they have no interest in trying to use the clout they should be using, when they do they just fine the company or country concerned which at the end of the day just means the people who are the victims of the crime ‘the people of the country’ end up paying, because that is where the fine comes from eventually… the EU is a farce and people need to waken up. Just Google ‘eu gravy train’ to see a little of the billions these politicians are taking in wages, expenses and pensions, it is obscene and yet they do nothing more than drag their feet and create problems.

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