“Loss of mud flats.” One of many environmental concerns cited in a recent environmentalist lawsuit to halt the project to deepen the shipping channel in the Elbe river between Hamburg and the sea. Litigation of the dispute will take years, so in order to keep irreversible faits accomplis from being created in the interim, the court has temporarily stopped the dredging. Hamburg is 130 kilometers from the ocean and still trying to compete with Rotterdam.

The plaintiffs say previous deepening of the Elbe’s shipping channel caused visible environmental damage that included loss of mud flats, increased current, lack of oxygen and loss of habitat.

(VOTT fer loose t.)


The Jade-Weser port, which recently opened in Wilhelmshaven. Jointly built by Bremen and Lower Saxony, this is Germany’s only deep-water port (18 meters deep) and will be accessible to giant oceangoing container vessels even at low tide. This is the first entirely planned German port that didn’t grow and accrete for hundreds of years.

The true competition, Rotterdam, has a port that’s 20 meters deep.

(YAH deh VAY zerr PORT.)

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