About a hundred protesters demonstrated Sunday afternoon against the Strebus cut between Holtom and Newstadt, which should partially make way for the expansion of the VDL NedCar car plant.
Protesters disagree with the fact that more than half of the centuries-old forest will be cut down to expand the auto plant, while it doesn’t have a new customer yet.
The automaker is eagerly looking for a new customer for its current BMW production line. This contract will expire in 2023. In addition, Nedcar wants to create a second production line and a large portion of Sterrebos will have to disappear due to these expansion plans.
Read also: Hard hit for Nedcar: BMW will stop production in 2023
Expand without a new client
Yes, there is an understanding among the protesters who gather in the backyard of Nedecar on White Sunday. A number of them also see economic boom and employment benefits as VDL Nedcar expands. Demonstrators are particularly troubled by the fact that the sales will start already in the fall, while it is not yet clear whether Nedcar will be able to attract new customers. If not, much of the forest has already been cleared for nothing, according to activists.
Plant new trees
Since the nearly 200-year-old Sterrebos is not preserved and only a few people come, it is an ideal habitat for animals such as bats, deer, butterflies and badgers. The fact that VDL Nedcar, in consultation with the county, wants to compensate for new logging is not a solution for many natural organizations. According to the show’s organization, many animal species will lose their habitat when logs are cut down and the new forest will take at least a century to reach the same level of carbon dioxide storage as Sterrebos.
The protest was attended by local work committees and political parties. A number of Holtom residents, Neustadt and Sostern also participated in the demonstration. According to a Holtom resident, the quality of life in the village is gradually being affected. In addition to the Sterrebos clearing, he gives as an example the large distribution center along the A2, the three new windmills to be built on the industrial zone and the A2 to be expanded.
Stichting De Groene Sporenwolf is one of the four parties that have provided their opinion on the Regional Integration Plan (PIP) for the expansion of Nedcar. Because it is not certain when the case will be brought before the State Council, the local work committee has also applied for a temporary restraining order. In this case, which will be heard by the highest administrative judge in our country next Tuesday, the institution wants to prevent cutting the stripo as long as it is not certain that the second extension is necessary.
The County of Limburg has already announced that it wants to start expanding as soon as possible, because otherwise, according to the county, the search for new clients in VDL Nedcar would be jeopardized.
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