Chicken hatchery project threatens fauna and flora near Saverne

Since 2017, a chick hatchery project has been planned in the Kuhbach floodplain near Saverne. According to Pascal Irlinger, a member of the opponents’ collective, this future facility, covering an area of ​​several hectares, threatens many protected species and risks further degrading the quality of water on earth.

In October 2017, Couvoirs de l’Est issued the first building permit for a project in the Kubach area, near Saverne, between Schwenheim and Marmoutier. This company specializes in the production of day old chicks. In September 2020, work in the area began but came to an abrupt halt despite the first land payments.

According to a September 27, 2021 DNA article, the hatchery project matured in the mind of promoter Joseph Scherbeck, so a new permit was filed on July 26, 2021, four years after the first. The new permit concerns four plots “with a total area of ​​48,152 m2. In response to the resumption of the construction project, Pascal Irlinger, a resident of Schwenheim, took over the organization of the Kuchbach Wetland Conservation Collective, formed in 2017:

“We are asking for this project to be canceled because the chosen location is ecocidal. This project will result in the destruction of nesting sites for endangered bird species such as crested lapwings, feeding grounds and migratory stopovers for protected species such as storks, egrets or egrets, as well as the deterioration of water quality in Kuhbaha and the artificial development of more than one hectares of wet meadows. »

“At the time of the observation by the design bureau, in September 2021, the water area was dry. [De plus, l’article 3 de l’AM du 29 octobre 2009] covers egg protection, sale and transport. This does not apply to the direct protection of individuals and habitats. The document also states that this place is unfavorable for nesting tree birds. The project office’s analysis also concerns whether the site is favorable for insects, bats, amphibians, reptiles and land mammals. It indicates that the site is not favorable for these species in terms of the management practices applied and the nature of the habitats available. »

“There was no public investigation because this type of installation is not classified, that is, it is considered dangerous. Therefore, the public is only informed and can appeal when a building permit is posted. My guess is that Dreal is suggesting that these birds will be able to nest elsewhere. »

“Grasslands play an important role in climate moderation. It is also the last functioning wetland west of Strasbourg. According to the permits issued, the land appears to be usable, as the Lower Rhine Territories Department (DDT) refers to a flood that occurred in 1970 and does not appear to have resulted in significant land flooding. Today we see that the area is easily flooded during periods of heavy rains. In addition, these activities carry the risk of contracting avian influenza due to the area inhabited by migratory birds. »

Benoit of the local group Alsace Nature denounces the flooding of the area without questioning the scientific expertise:

“If we build this hatchery, we will reduce the flood area. They will become more stable in a small space not mastered by man. In addition, according to the 2020 Annual Report of the Water and Sanitation Syndicate Alsace-Moselle (SDEA) the sewage treatment plant next to the site is oversaturated on average one day in three because the amount of wastewater is too important due to heavy rains and rising consumption and number of households in the region. These wastewater surpluses go directly into nature. This hatchery project will not improve the water quality situation in the area. »

“No one is doing anything about the pollution of Kuhbach. In 2018, there was already an investment and renaturation plan presented by the SDEA to restore the natural flow of the watercourse, giving it a meandering shape to reduce its speed and restore vegetation, but this is a temporary solution. It is also necessary to ensure that farms stop dumping polluting products into their beds. »

Despite numerous attempts to contact the company, Couvoirs de l’Est was unwilling to respond or respond to Rue89 Strasbourg’s questions. The municipality of Marmoutier says it has no information about the construction, but simply confirmed that the industrial hatchery project is still underway.

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