Pyrénées-Atlantiques, France


Located in the town of Hendaye, Txingudi Bay is a nature reserve classified as an 'Area of Great Importance for the Conservation of Wild Birds in Europe' and a Special Protection Area (SPA) Natura 2000.

Txingudi Bay is an exceptional natural wetland area and plays host to a large number of marine bird species.

Unfortunately, three different types of pollution have been identified in this reserve.

Pollution no 1: Rubble Dumps

Recently dumped rubble spreading over a length of about 100 m is first discovered on the 17th of February 2010 along the Watersports Centre. The deposits consist of stones and gravel, bitumen, pavement stones, plastic pipes, metal, plastic netting, and plant roots. All indications are that it stems from road refurbishment works.

The Technical Services Department from the city of Handaye claims 'not to know' anything about the provenance of this inert waste.

Later on, the newspaper Sud Ouest publishes an article finally explaining that the rubble, which has been deposited on the little beach of the Txingudi nature reserve (also called 'plage du Centre Nautique') 'by mistake', originates from the building site at the marina car park (Sokoburu). The project owner is the Technical Services Department of Hendaye, working in cooperation with the company Sogeba.

Pollution no 2: Fly Tipping

The fly-tipped litter, which is clearly visible along the fence that separates the technical area from the water sports centre, has been dumped there several weeks ago. 

Pollution no 3: Mounds of Collected Waste

The waste and wood which has been collected mechanically from the neighbouring stretch of sand has been piled up in a heap at the top of the water sports centre beach. By examining the strand line on the beach, it can be noted that during strong high tides, the water reaches these heaps, risking to return some of the collected pollutants into the ocean - not to mention the repugnant visual aspect of mounds of abandoned waste left on the beach.

Note: Following our reports and the consecutive publishing of several articles in the local media, Hendaye Town Council proceeds to clean up the different polluted areas.

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