Beach fill and practices of the authorities
The Sunce Association has repeatedly warned about the problem of deficient coastal landscaping – there are no environmental impact assessment procedures during beach filling, concessionaires arrange beaches according to their will and without the necessary permits, and local authorities supplement the beaches with soil and construction waste, and no control of the materials used to supplement the beaches. All this unquestionably affects the marine environment and important habitats in the coastal zone, and finally with such activities we shape the coast, which is in no way characteristic or authentic for Croatia.
It is extremely problematic that after illegal actions have already been carried out on the coast, a measure of restoration is rarely ordered, moreover, many procedures are approved after the embankment has already been carried out.
However, the Sunce Association also testifies to some good examples from practice when the competent authorities used their powers for the purpose of environmental protection in the inspection procedure:
Concreting the coast in Seget Vranjica
Without previously obtained consent and contrary to the concession agreement, the concessionaire concreted natural stone cracks in Seget Vranjica in a total area of 416 m2. After we forwarded the report to the Ministry of the Sea, Transport and Infrastructure, the authorized inspector went to the location and ordered the perpetrator to return the maritime property to its original condition in accordance with its nature and intention. Also, within the decision of the Ministry were specified the methods of disposal that will result in the least damage to the environment.
We can only imagine what our coast would look like and what would be left of it if everyone arranged the coast in this way according to their needs, so the Sunce Association welcomes this decision of the Ministry in the hope that other inspectors will use the restitution measure in similar cases and prevent coastal devastation.
Beach fill of Osejava beach in Makarska
The Sunce Association regularly receives reports of inadequate supplementary feeding and illegal filling of beaches on the Makarska Riviera on the Green Phone. One such example is this year’s “arrangement” of Osejava beach in Makarska, after which a large brown spot and turbidity appeared in the sea.
During the inspection procedure, it was established that the City of Makarska filled the beach with earth and non-hazardous mineral construction waste generated by the construction of a kindergarten. It was also determined that the City of Makarska is the investor in the process of building a kindergarten as well as in the project of filling the beach Osejava, and that the company Builder d.o.o. in both cases the contractor. So, to simplify, the City of Makarska just transferred the construction waste generated during the construction of the kindergarten to the neighboring beach, instead of adequate disposal, and called it the arrangement of the beach.
Considering that the Environmental Protection Study for the filling and arrangement of the beach in question envisages the use of stone material, and not earth and stones from excavation, the Environmental Protection Inspectorate issued a misdemeanor order to Makarska for dumping waste into the environment.
There are positive examples in practice, but the arrangement of many beaches is still beyond the control and supervision of the authorities. If we want to preserve the ecosystems of the Adriatic Sea, the way beaches are maintained must not be left to the will of individuals within local authorities, and any change in the coastline must go through environmental impact assessment procedures to select the most sustainable and environmentally acceptable solution.
The SEAS project is implemented with the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway within the European Economic Area and Norwegian grants, and our project partners are WWF Adria, Green Istria Association, Urbanex d.o.o. and the University of South-Eastern Norway (USN).