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Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link, Germany - Denmark


The Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link is an immersed tunnel (in earlier design iterations, a bridge) that is proposed to connect the German island of Fehmarn with the Danish island of Lolland. This would cross over the Fehmarn Belt in the Baltic Sea – 18 km (11 mi) wide – hence providing a direct link by railroad and highway between northern Germany and Lolland, and thence to the Danish island of Zealand. Denmark and Germany signed the state treaty on the construction of the link. The Transport Minister appointed Femern A/S to plan and design the fixed link across the Fehmarn-belt. Currently the EIA is being submitted for public consultation. It is also remarkable that the European Union has designated this project as one of the 30 prioritised transport infrastructure projects (TEN-T).

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link, Germany - Denmark
State or province:Schleswig-Holstein/ Region Zealand
Location of conflict:Ostholstein/ Lolland
Accuracy of locationMEDIUM (Regional level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict: 1st level:Infrastructure and Built Environment
Type of conflict: 2nd level :Transport infrastructure networks (roads, railways, hydroways, canals and pipelines)
Specific commodities:Tourism services
Transportation Services
Project Details and Actors
Project details:

17.6 km of immersed tunnel: 40 m wide, almost 10 m high 4 lane road 2 tracks railway

Level of Investment:7,290,000,000
Type of populationUrban
Start of the conflict:1994
Company names or state enterprises:Femern A/S from Denmark
Relevant government actors:Danish Ministry of Transport
International and Finance InstitutionsEU
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Action Alliance against a Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link, NABU: Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union
Conflict and Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stageUnknown
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Informal workers
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Trade unions
Local scientists/professionals
Conservationists, owners of holiday lets, operators of caravan and holiday facilities, representatives of retailers,restaurants and the ferry service and captains.
Forms of mobilization:Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Media based activism/alternative media
Official complaint letters and petitions
Street protest/marches
Impacts of the project
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity
Health ImpactsPotential: Occupational disease and accidents
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment
Project StatusPlanned (decision to go ahead eg EIA undertaken, etc)
Conflict outcome / response:Environmental improvements, rehabilitation/restoration of area
Change of project: tunnel instead of bridge.
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:Prior to the tunnel, the idea was to build a bridge which was highly criticised and opposed. Surprisingly, in 2010 the construction of a tunnel was announced. The Danes widely agreed whereas resistance grew in Germany.
Besides, the company has carried out extensive environmental investigations.
Sources and Materials
References to published books, academic articles, movies or published documentaries

Citizens’ Action Committee

Against the Fehmarn Belt

Fixed Link (2009). Fehmarn Belt. Review of a fixed link crossing.

VIEREGG - ROSSLER GmbH (2008). Expert report on the traffic forecasts and cost calculations of the Proposed Fixed Fehmarnbelt Link

Links to general newspaper articles, blogs or other websites

Femern A/S webpage:
[click to view]

NABU analysis of economic concerns and environmental impacts:
[click to view]

European Comission Infrastructure TEN-T:
[click to view]

Der Spiegel:
[click to view]

The Guardian:
[click to view]

Action Alliance against a Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link (in German):
[click to view]

Related media links to videos, campaigns, social network

Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link - bridge between Denmark and Germany (Animation)
[click to view]

Other comments:- Action Alliance against a Fehmarnbelt Fixed Link (in German):
Meta information
Contributor:Alfred Burballa Noria
Last update24/06/2014
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