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The Wadden Sea: A Special Area - Specially Protected?
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The Wadden Sea: A Special Area - Specially Protected?

(Pieter Leroy) The Low Countries - 1994, № 2, pp. 108-113

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After years of comparative peace and quiet there is once again a threat to the environment of the Wadden Sea. In December 1993 the Dutch cabinet decided that, after a ten-year moratorium, from 1994 onwards it is permissible to drill for gas in the Wadden Sea. Before the first gas has been extracted from the Wadden Sea in 1999, a great many reports will undoubtedly have been written on the environmental effects. Nevertheless, the question arises as to whether this decision does not mean that the internationally accepted precautionary principle has been trampled under foot. But more important than this discussion of principle is the question of whether the Wadden Sea area will actually survive this environmental interference. The answer will probably only emerge in fifty years' time.

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