San Glorio Ski Complex, Spain

Description

The San Glorio ski resort project is aimed to be constructed between the Puerto de San Glorio, (1,609 m high) (Cantabria) and the towns of Cardaño de Arriba (Palencia) and Portilla de la Reina (León). The project entails the construction of a macro-ski resort in two natural parks, protected by EU environmental legislation (Parque Natural de Fuentes Carrionas and Fuente del Cobre and Parque Regional de Picos de Europa). The Spanish Ministry of Environment has always been against the project, but the regional governments and the Town Councils have pushed forward the project. The opinion of the local population of the area is split. Some see this tourist project as the only possibility of development in a council characterised by economic decline. Other people in the area (along with national environmental organisations) think that the project would negatively affect the environment and could destroy more environmentally-friendly paths for economic development. The Regional governemnt and the town Councils governed by the PP and PSOE have changed the environmental legislation, allowing the construction of the macro-ski resort within the natural parks. This conflict was brought before the European Court of Justice by environmental groups and in 2008, and the Court cancelled the permits allowing the construction of the ski-resort within the natural parks. Following that decision the project is frozen but has not been completelly abandoned.

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Basic Data
NameSan Glorio Ski Complex, Spain
CountrySpain
ProvinceCantabria, Palencia and León
SiteEl Puerto de San Glorio (Cantabria), Cardaño de Arriba (Palencia) and Portilla de la Reina (León)
Accuracy of LocationMEDIUM regional level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Tourism Recreation
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Tourism facilities (ski resorts, hotels, marinas)
Specific CommoditiesTourism services
Project Details and Actors
Project Details80 km ski resorts 14 chair lifts, 2 cablecars and 16 drag lifts 58,000 m2 to use as a parking for buses capacity for 32,500 skiers per hour.

Construction of a road from Portilla de la Reina.

Construction of a parking for the skiers.

Expansion of already existing roads.

Construction of hotel complexes with hoteles, malls, sport centres, and ice/skating ring.

Project Area (in hectares)1220
Level of Investment (in USD)91000000
Type of PopulationRural
Potential Affected Population30000
Start Date2003
Company Names or State EnterprisesTres Provincias S.A. from Spain
Serveis i Equipaments de Muntanya from Spain
EULEN from Spain - the main stockholder, known in the construction sector.
Relevant government actorsJunta de Castilla y León , Cantabria Government, Town Council of Boca de Huérgano , Spanish Ministry of Environment
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersPlataforma en Defensa de San Glorio, with the following groups:, Ecologistas en Acción Palencia, FAPAS, Club de Montaña Fuentes Carrionas, Fundación Globalnature, Asoc. Conservación y Estudio Lobo Ibérico, Izquierda Unida, Club de Montaña Nevada, Club Orientación Rio Carrión, ARCA Cantabria, Asociación Econaturalista Palentina, ACUP, Asoc. de Naturalistas Palentinos, CGT Palencia, GUM (Grupo Universitario de Montaña) Valladolid, Colectivo Norte, Instituto Alavés de la Naturaleza, CIFAES, Regüelta Cantabria, Promúsica Palencia, Puenteci-jazz, Club de Montaña Espigüete, Ecologistas en Acción Vitoria, Grupo Alavés para Defensa y Estudio Naturaleza, Grupo Lobo de Euskadi, Asociación para un Trato Ético de los Animales, Grupo Montañero Curavacas, Ecologistas en Acción Cantabria, Ecologistas en Acción Extremadura, Asoc. Para la Recuperación del Bosque Autóctono en Valladolid, Galanthus. Asoc estudio Medio Amb. De Girona, Asociación de Naturalistas del Sureste, STEE-EILAS (sindicato de trabajadores de la enseñanza de Euskadi), Coordinadora Ecoloxista dAsturies, Colectivo Ecologista de Avilés, Asociación Deportiva Altai, Coordinadora Central Salinas, A.V. Pan y Guindas (Palencia), GRUPO NATURALISTA HONTZA /HONTZA NATUR ELKARTEA, CGT España, Coordinadora Ornitolóxica d´Asturies, CGT Valladolid, CGT Segovia, GECA Asturias, Asoc. 'Chupa de Dómine', Fed. Cántabra de Dep. de Montaña y Escalada, Peña de Montañeros Gistredo, Club Alpino Burgalés, Sociedad de Montañeros Burgaleses, CGT Cantabria, Asociación medioambiental IZATE, EMOCIO, Emociones y Tiempo Libre, OCIUM, dep. y cultura para todos, Grupo Espeleológico Logroño, Agrupación Astronómica Palentina, Amigos de la Tierra, CNT-AIT Cantabria, Asociación Deportiva Igollo, Montes y Maderas 200, S.L., Ecologistas en Acción-Sierras de Salamanca, Sociedad protectora de animales y plantas de Alcoy, Fundación Oso Pardo
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingLocal ejos
Neighbours/citizens/communities
Forms of MobilizationInvolvement of national and international NGOs
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Public campaigns
Bringing the case to the Spanish Court and the European Court of Justice.
Impacts
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover
OtherImpact on protected species such as the Cantabrian Capercaillie, the Brown Bear and la liebre de piornal (endemismo cantábrico), o el Tritón alpino.

Also plant species such as Androsace cantábrica and Artemisia umbelliformis would have a negative impact.

Other.
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Loss of livelihood, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Outcome
Project StatusStopped
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseInstitutional changes
Court decision (victory for environmental justice)
Project cancelled
Project frozen
Development of AlternativesNot to build the ski complex.
Do you consider this as a success?Yes
Why? Explain briefly.Yes, the Platforma en Defensa de San Glorio brought the case before several Spanish Courts and before the European Court of Justice. These courts recognised the Platforms points and cancelled the permission for urbanising within the Natural Parks. Since then the project is frozen.
Sources and Materials
Legislations

European Commission (1992). Directive 92/43/EEC of the European Council of 21 May 1992 on the conservation of natural habitats and wild fauna and flora. Official Journal of the European Communities L 206, 7-50 Brussels: European Commission.

European Commission (2010). Directive 2009/147/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 November 2009 on the conservation of wild birds. Official Journal of

the European Communities L 020 7-25, Brussels: European Commission.

European Commission (2002). Council Regulation (EC) No 1407/2002 of 23 July 2002

on State aid to the coal industry. Official Journal L 205 0001 – 0008. Brussels: European

Commission.

MITyC (2004). Plan nacional de reserva estratégica de carbón 2006-2012 y nuevo modelo de

desarrollo integral y sostenible de las comarcas mineras. Madrid: Ministerio de Industria,Turismo y Comercio.

BOE (1986). Real Decreto Legislativo 1302/1986, de 28 de junio, de evaluación de impacto ambiental. Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Urbanismo. BOE 155: 23733-23735.

References

1st part:
[click to view]

2nd part:
[click to view]

3rd part:
[click to view]

Documentary about the SanGlorio conflict. Linia 900: La batalla de San Glorio:

Links

Website from the Plataforma en Defensa de San Glorio:
[click to view]

website from Ecologistas en acción with quite some information about the conflict: ón_de_esquí_de_San_Glorio
[click to view]

Newspaper article: Ecologistas advierte a la Junta de que habrá un conflicto por San Glorio y recurrirán todo lo que se menee:
[click to view]

Media Links

Series of photos against the macro-ski resort project in San Glorio:
[click to view]

Series of photos against the macro-ski resort project in San Glorio:
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorAmaranta Herrero
Last update08/04/2014
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