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“This demonstrates once again the urgency of the approach to nitrogen problems. This approach must be firm and clear.” This is what Nitrogen Minister van der Waal said in an initial response to the State Council’s decision This morning she did. The highest administrative court has ruled that nitrogen emitted during the construction of projects may not be ignored and that the so-called “construction exemption” contravenes European rules.
Van der Waal and colleague De Jonge voor Volkshuisvetsing called the ruling a setback, but admitted they were already afraid it might turn out like that. “The verdict is clear and simple and we can no longer live at the expense,” van der Waal said. “That means you really have to emit less nitrogen and you really have to get nature back. Only then will you have the space to fully grant the permits.”
‘unlocked but late’
De Jonge emphasized that this does not mean that no more buildings can be built and that the Netherlands will be closed. “But that means a delay, to say the least,” he admitted.
Tomorrow the House of Representatives will discuss the Nitrogen Broker Remix report and prior to that discussion, the Cabinet wants to provide an initial interpretation of the State Council’s decision, as the House also requested. Ministers also announced an action plan later this month.
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