From BirdLife, with some spelling mistakes corrected:
Gas threat to Wadden Sea
Vogelbescherming Nederland (VBN, BirdLife in the Netherlands) is to lodge an appeal against a permit authorising natural gas extraction in the Wadden Sea.
The largest intertidal area in Europe, the Wadden Sea is recognised by BirdLife as an Important Bird Area and by the European Union as a Natura 2000 area.
But the habitat is already in poor condition, and gas extraction would cause further subsidence of the sands on which large numbers of migratory birds depend.
“This internationally important natural reserve is in a deplorable state,” said Hans Peeters, VBN’s Communications Officer.
For this reason, the Dutch government has drawn up a strategy for the preservation and restoration of the habitat, particularly the dry high sands, which are vital for birds like Red Knot and Oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegu[s].
“The intended gas extraction will put pressure on this strategic objective,” Peeters explained.
“It is expected that up to 2024 a periodic deterioration of the surface of the high sands will take place.
This decline will therefore hinder the natural restoration of the Wadden Sea for a longer period of time.”
To compensate for the drop in sand levels, sand from elsewhere along the coast would be dumped into the sea.
This would suffocate the invertebrates on which birds like Common Scoter Melannita nigra and Common Eider Somateria mollissima depend.
Red knots and horseshoe crabs: here.