The Partido Popular-led right-wing regional government of Andalucía is on the verge of approving construction of a four-star hotel with 33 rooms, swimming pool & 70 parking spaces in one of the most beautiful spots of Spain’s southern coastline and within the boundaries of the Cabo de Gata-Níjar natural park.
But environmental activists in Andalucía are vowing to stop the project, saying it would constitute a virtual repeat of the illegal white-elephant hotel project built at the nearby Algarrobico beach under the previous Socialist regional government, the demolition of which was ordered by Spain’s Supreme Court in 2016.
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Among the activists opposing the project are Greenpeace España, Ecologistas en Acción, the Grupo Ecologista Mediterráneo (GEM), and local groups, Salvemos Mojácar and the Asociación Amigos del Parque.
As of Thursday morning, more than 172,000 people had signed a petition at Change.org calling for a halt to hotel project at the Genoveses beach in the Cabo de Gata-Níjar natural preserve.
► ► Sign the Petition, here: ‘No al Hotel de Genoveses #CabodeGataNoSeToca’
In a statement, Greenpeace España said the hotel project is “completely unviable” and is located within the protected Cabo de Gata-Níjar preserve in a C1 zone “where only traditional agricultural crops, forestry, hunting and environmental education activities are allowed”.
Antonio Fernández, vice president and spokesman for the GEM, says that the project “seems outrageous, not only because of the environmental impact, which would be very high in this space full of unique plant life and exceptional landscape, but because it radically changes the model of tourism in the area”.
The environmentalists are threatening court action if the regional government takes a final vote later this month to go ahead with the project. They also say they will file a formal complaint with the European Commission in Brussels because the construction of a hotel at the Genoveses beach would fly in the face of the area’s designation as one of hundreds of sites that make up the Natura 2000 network of areas that provide protection to Europe’s most valuable and threatened species and habitats.
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