Rising waters in the English Channel. Risky situations before the courts

hooly-news.com is devoting a great deal to investigating the rising waters in the English Channel. In the department, the Coutances prosecutor, Cyril Lacombe, deals with the issue of rising sea levels in special hearings, once a quarter.

The Coutances prosecutor deals with cases where the danger is real in case of rising waters and strong gales. Here, the storm Ciara, in Gouville-sur-Mer, Monday February 10, 2020. | WEST-FRANCE / STÉPHANE GEUFROI


  • The Coutances prosecutor deals with cases o & ugrave; the danger is real in the event of rising waters and strong gales. Here, the temp & ecirc; te Ciara, & agrave; Gouville-sur-Mer, Monday 10 & nbsp; February 2020.
    The Coutances prosecutor deals with cases where the danger is real in case of rising waters and strong gales. Here, the storm Ciara, in Gouville-sur-Mer, Monday February 10, 2020. | WEST-FRANCE / STÉPHANE GEUFROI

The Manchese coastline has always changed according to storms, gusts of wind and high tides. Global warming is also doing its work. The department has been facing rising sea levels for several years. Coastal risk prevention plans have been launched in several sectors. There are still questions: can Manchis, should they back off and let the sea nibble on the land? On the contrary, should we fight against it? Faced with these challenges, West France decided to devote a vast investigation to the rising waters in the English Channel.

"One of the cases dealt with in court, but there are others already identified, shows that in the event of a marine submersion and a break in the dune, we will be in exactly the same case as La Faute-sur -Sea, in Vendée, where the storm Xynthia has left dozens dead. " The prosecutor of the Republic of Coutances, Cyril Lacombe, says he is concerned by the question of risky situations on the Manchor coast. "This is a subject that is close to my heart because it is what we leave to our children and there is a real need to coordinate and act! "

Several months ago, with his colleague from Cherbourg, they created the Copen 50, the operational committee for the environmental police in the English Channel. An innovative method, which consists of putting around the table representatives of justice, the French biodiversity office, the police, the gendarmerie, the coastal protection or the DDTM (Departmental Directorate of Territories and of the sea. "It is, in a way, the armed wing of the state's environmental mission. Everyone can raise a problem, we sit around the table and set up joint operations. "

"Like at La Faute-sur-Mer"

Once every three months or so, the prosecution therefore deals with these cases in a dedicated audience. We talk about town planning, the environment code, pollution or even risky situations … “We come across situations where people, for years, have installed one or more caravans on non-constructible land. They are citizens of the mayor and he does not always have the expertise to act. Except that today, in addition to the environmental damage that it can represent, these lands, often installed behind dunes, present a real danger. We cannot leave people in such a situation. "

In recent months, the identification of these situations and the classification in the red zone have become systematic. “We have a few dozen pending cases in the English Channel. At first we set up a regularization plan and if people do nothing, justice passes. If necessary we can make on-call payments with large sums, until they understand that they must remove their caravan or their mobile home. "

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