HomeDanish PoliticsDanish Environment Minister awaits researchers' calculations for marine improvements

Danish Environment Minister awaits researchers’ calculations for marine improvements

Denmark’s Minister for the Environment awaits the calculations from researchers to determine which specific measures are necessary to improve the Danish marine environment. Only then will concrete solutions be discussed. Minister for the Environment Magnus Heunicke emphasized at a hearing on Wednesday, convened by Søren Egge Rasmussen (Red-Green Alliance), that the current measures are inadequate.

“There are many different measures that I look forward to discussing with the parties. But I will wait to assess the individual measures until we have a picture of the overall need for action,” he said. “But I would like to say that it is completely impossible to imagine that we can continue with the current measures.” Researchers are currently working on calculations to determine the necessary actions. These calculations are expected to be completed this year.

The condition of the Danish seas has received special attention after a revelation by DR (Danish Broadcasting Corporation) claimed that the Ministry of Environment has illegally prioritized commercial interests over environmental concerns. This allegedly occurred through permits for the discharge of environmentally harmful substances in marine areas from, among others, the pesticide factory Cheminova, which contradicts the EU’s Water Framework Directive.

In addition, the worst oxygen depletion in the inner Danish waters in 20 years was reported last September. The situation has led to an emergency package of 405 million Danish kroner over four years to help the marine environment. Of these, 71 million kroner will be used to purchase facilities and areas that reduce the amount of nitrogen in Vejle Fjord and Limfjorden this year.

The Minister of the Environment has previously stated that the emergency package alone is not sufficient, and that national nitrogen regulation will need to be negotiated when the agricultural agreement is revisited by the parties by the end of the year.

“In my eyes, this is decades of failure, where successive governments and changing majorities, and no parties in the parliament can free themselves from the responsibility for the situation our fjords are in,” the minister said on Wednesday.

The agricultural agreement from 2021 stipulates that nitrogen emissions must be reduced by 10,800 tons by 2027. In order for Denmark to meet the EU’s requirements for a good water environment, emissions must be reduced by 13,100 tons by 2027.

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