Watchdog voices concerns over coastal bill

The Ombudsman warned Thursday of the “exhaustive exploitation” of Greece’s coastline if the government goes ahead with draft legislation that would relax restrictions on building and commercial activity next to the sea.

“The proposed regulations carry the danger of the environmental degradation of the coastline through its exhaustive exploitation,” said the watchdog, which also expressed concern about the impact on areas that are part of the Natura 2000 network.

The government withdrew the legislation last month after an outcry from environmental organizations and citizens. It said that it would engage in a wider discussion before finalizing the bill.