By John Smith •
Published: 27 Jun 2021 • 17:00
Deer in the National Park
Red faces in Government as Spain is found guilty of environmental neglect by European Court of Justice.
The European Court for Justice has confirmed on June 24 that Spain needs to do more to protect Doñana National Park, home to one of Europe’s largest wetlands.
THIS enormous park in the southern region of Andalusia spreads across Cadiz, Huelva and Sevilla and boasts a diverse ecosystem of lagoons, marshlands, scrub woodland, beaches and sand dune.
It is home to fallow deer, wild boars, badgers and endangered species including the Spanish imperial eagle and the Iberian lynx.
It is also on the migratory route of millions of birds each year and the Court has found that farmers are illegally building wells which drain off much of the water and the Spanish Government has allowed water to be diverted for use to support the tourist industry.
The Court, based in Luxembourg has agreed with the European Commission which filed a complaint in 2019 that lagoons and marshes were drying out and ruled that Spain was in breach of EU nature legislation because it “did not take into account the illegal water extractions” in the park and their impact on groundwater.
The Spanish Government is required to act in accordance with the ruling or face the possibility of significant fines if the Court requirements are not complied with.
A report in RFI France, suggests that Spain has been found guilty of more infringements of any other member state of the EU and the breaches are more than three times the average of each member of the other 26 states according to the European Commission.
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Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica.
Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene.
Currently he is acting as Editorial Consultant for the paper helping to shape its future development.
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