Farmers could bring tractor protest to Amsterdam; Construction workers rally likely in Den Haag

Tractors block traffic in Den Haag just before evening rush hour
Tractors in Den Haag caused a traffic jam on the S101 already at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 1, 2019Photo: NL Times

Farmers are planning to move their protest against the government's nitrogen policy from The Hague to Amsterdam. But that doesn't mean the Malieveld in The Hague will be left empty. Construction workers are planning to protest there next week Wednesday.

Sources within the "agricultural corner" told the Telegraaf that farmers plan to show their dissatisfaction with the nitrogen policy in Amsterdam. "We have a great idea for a citizen friendly campaign", Bert Kemp, one of the organizers of the first tractor protest in The Hague on October 1st, said to the newspaper. Over the weekend, the farmers' action groups spoke to Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema and other city officials about this protest.

Kemp did not want to say exactly what the demonstration will entail, or when it will happen. 

Now that the farmers are moving the attention of their protest to other parts of the country, construction workers will take their place in The Hague. On Wednesday, October 30th, construction workers will demonstrate on the Malieveld. They fear for their continued existence if the government does not make clear decisions in the issues surrounding nitrogen emissions and Pfas, Trouw reports.

After the Nitrogen Approach Program was declared invalid, municipalities are still hesitant to issue permits for projects that may release nitrogen. Hundreds of projects in housing, road construction and the dredging sector are at a stand still. Some licensed projects are on hold, because the ground on which the work takes place may contain Pfas - a collection of around 6 thousand chemical substances that are difficult to degrade. Soil containing Pfas can therefore not be moved, or only moved to a limited extent.

"We are already up to our necks in it. And nothing happens", Arnold Tuytel, one of the initiators of the protest, said to Trouw. "If I speak for myself for a moment: a number of my vehicles are standing still because there is not enough work. And I'm thinking about not renewing some contracts." If politicians don't make up their minds and take action now, a lot of companies only have a few weeks to live, Tuytel said.