Negro, V., López-Gutiérrez, J.S., Esteban, M.D., Matutano, C., 2014. An analysis of recent changes in Spanish Coastal Law. In: Green, A.N. and Cooper, J.A.G. (eds.), Proceedings 13th International Coastal Symposium (Durban, South Africa), Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 70, pp. 448–453, ISSN 0749-0208.

Spanish coastal legislation has changed in response to changing circumstances. The objective of the 1969 Spanish Coastal Law was to assign responsibilities in the Public Domain to the authorities. The 1980 Spanish Coastal Law addressed infractions and sanctions issues. The 1988 Spanish Coastal Law completed the responsibilities and sanctions aspects and included others related to the delimitation of the Public Domain, the private properties close to the Public Domain, and limitations on landuse in this area.

The 1988 Spanish Coastal Law has been controversial since its publication. The “European Parliament Report on the impact of extensive urbanization in Spain on individual rights of European citizen, on the environment and on the application of EU law, based upon petitions received”, published in 2009 recommended that the Spanish Authorities make an urgent revision of the Coastal Law with the main objective of protecting property owners whose buildings do not have negative effects on the coastal environment.

The revision recommended has been carried out, in the new Spanish Coastal Law “Ley 2/2013, de 29 de mayo, de protección y uso sostenible del litoral y de modificación de la Ley 22/1988, de 28 de Julio, de Costas”, published in May of 2013. This is the first major change in the 25 years since the previous 1988 Spanish Coastal Law. This paper compares the 1988 and 2013 Spanish Coastal Law documents, highlighting the most important issues like the Public Domain description, limitations in private properties close to the Public Domain limit, climate change influence, authorizations length, etc. The paper includes proposals for further improvements.

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