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Dutch cabinet abandons Haringvliet floodgate upgrade

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

THE HAGUE - The new Dutch cabinet coalition no longer pursues the opening of the Haringvliet floodgates. Opening these major gates connecting the rivers Rhine and Meuse with the North Sea had been agreed upon by previous cabinets, as part of negotiations under international law (Rhine Convention) and EU law (Water Framework Directive and Natura 2000 Directives). The Haringvliet is the main entrance for migratory fish, such as the Atlantic salmon, to its breeding area upstream in Germany and Switzerland. The policy reversal regarding these plans to partially open the floodgates so that the rivers regain their former fresh-salt water interplay, has received much international criticism in Europe. To accommodate the previously formulated plans entails a costly upgrading of the floodgates.