Seagull on navigation mark. Does the protection of birds take priority over human life?
In the short to medium term, the urgently required free access for the DGzRS rescue cruiser to its station in the Darßer Ort emergency port will probably not work. After the dredger "Kronos" started digging the sanded fairway on Wednesday, the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Ministry of Transport responsible for the work had to pull the dredger back yesterday. Reason: The colleagues from the State Environment Ministry had announced that the bird migration had started unusually early and therefore all work in the area of the national park, to which the emergency port belongs, should be stopped with immediate effect.
A spokesman for the environment ministry told YACHT online that in the past few days employees of the local national park office had started to count migratory birds on the Darß. The result: 550 waders (including terns, for example) and 220 seagulls were sighted between July 11 and 23. It is important to protect these bird species.
AIS track of the dredger "Kronos". You can clearly see how the ship was working in front of the Darß and then suddenly turned towards Denmark yesterday morning
In the weeks before, the national park administration had specifically prevented an earlier start of the dredging work, which was actually planned, by processing requests from the Ministry of Economic Affairs for the dredged material to be dumped in the port and immediately off the coast - as was done with earlier dredging of the access channel - suddenly no longer consented. The Ministry of Economic Affairs then decided to have the dumping at sea outside the national park, even if this is associated with considerably more effort and costs.
When this became known, environmentalists, namely the BUND, tried at the last minute to legally prevent the dredging work, but their corresponding applications before the Greifswald Administrative Court had failed.
The spokesman for the state environment ministry was not able to explain with absolute certainty why the national park administration started the bird counts on the date when the dredging work was supposed to begin. He said, however, that this was "probably done on the instructions of the relevant specialist departments in the ministry". The spokesman did not want to comment on why his ministry drove the Ministry of Economic Affairs into the parade.
A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Transport did not want to comment on the process either. The aim, however, is to resume work as soon as possible. But this is not to be expected before November, since the official bird protection season on Darß does not end until the end of October.
The rescue cruiser must therefore remain stationed in the distant Barhöft. Under certain circumstances, this can cost lives. The past few weeks had already shown that the lifeguards in emergencies in front of the Darß were on the road much longer than before, when they could still operate from the port of emergency.
And for sailors, in view of the latest developments, which outsiders can hardly understand and which most likely result in a bitter guerrilla war between two SPD state ministers whose employees or subordinate authorities can be explained, there will probably not be a long-term solution to the port problem on the Darß.