Rise in anti-government protests in Groningen
People from the northern province of Groningen are showing anger on the government policies and recent bankruptcy of aluminum company Aldel. The company’s closure was the last straw for Groningers.
People are concerned about earthquakes caused by natural gas drilling, job losses due to the deteriorating economy and lack of facilities. On Friday, nearly 1,000 have rallied against Aldel’s bankruptcy, Volkskrant said.
As a result of earthquakes caused by gas drilling, real estate market is also facing problems in Groningen. The value of houses is falling there.
According to the newspaper, nearly 200 people on Friday protested outside the provincial council offices in Groningen about the consequences of the gas drilling.
Bram Reinders of the village of Farmsum was the organizer. He created a Facebook page Groningers in Opstand on the day the news about the bankruptcy of Aldel. The page currently is liked by approximately 23,000 people.
Volkskrant said that many people laid off by Aldel belong to the east Groningen villages, which were communist until the 1990s. In March 2014, local elections will be held and they are expected to be a real test of public opinion, according to the paper.