MACIA Blázquez, the president of the environmental watchdog GOB, said yesterday that the past two years under the Partido Popular (PP) had led to “a destruction never before seen” in environmental matters. He said that its policy was for works of a “pharaonic scope” which damaged the tourist model of the islands.
At the half way mark of the current government's term of office, Blázquez reviewed its environmental policies, together with GOB spokesmen Toni Muñoz and Miquel Angel March. They described government action over the past two years as “the biggest attack on the land in the history of Majorca.” They were particularly critical of the lack of protection of natural spaces, the use of rural areas for building new motorways and promoting utilities and amenities which “have a huge impact.” Blázquez underlined what he called the “grave incongruity” of the government, which speaks of protection of the environment to promote the islands in tourism fairs, but at the same time is dedicated to the continual construction of amenities and “eating up” the land. He said that the current panorama was cause for concern, with construction work on six new motorways in Majorca, the existence of plans for new motorways which have not yet started and the government's intention of building the new national health hospital at Son Espases, a relatively undeveloped area on the outskirts of Palma. What's more, Blázquez said, “more than 2'000 hectares of rural land will be mutilated” under the Roads Plan for the islands.
He added that the lack of protection of natural spaces was one of the most negative aspects of the government's policies.
He was particularly critical of the reduction of the amount of protected land in the Llevant park of Arta and Cala d'Hort, as this was done “without any report to back it up.” He added that GOB has reported this reduction to the European Union Commission. He also accused the government of allowing “an illegal tourist offer” in catalogued places such as Natural Areas of Special Interest in Ibiza. GOB's criticism comes just one day after a scathing Greenpeace report which said that Spain is destroying its coastline by overbuilding, singling out the Balearic government for its harshest criticism. It described its planning policies as a step backwards in the protection of the coasts.

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