Denmark builds border fence to keep German pigs out amid African swine fever fears | World News
Denmark has started building a 44-mile (70-km) fence along its border with Germany in an effort to keep out wild boar.
The 30m-kroner (£3.5m) structure, which will stand at up to five feet (1.5 metres) tall, is being erected in an attempt to prevent the spread of African swine fever.
Danish officials have admitted that wild animals could pass through gaps in the fence where it crosses highways, roads and streams.
Work began on Monday in Padborg, a town located on the border with Germany.
Danish politicians authorised the fence in June 2018 after the government warned the country’s pork exports to non-European Union countries, worth 11bn kroner (£1.2bn) annually, could be affected by African swine fever.
Total Danish pork exports were worth about 30bn kroner (£3.4bn) in 2016.
Unlike swine flu, African swine fever does not affect humans. But it can be deadly for domestic and wild boars and cause massive losses for farmers.
Critics say the fence will harm wildlife and is merely a symbolic gesture tackling a largely non-existent problem.
There are some 150 million pigs in the EU, and 40% of them are in Spain and Germany, with significant numbers also in France, Denmark, the Netherlands and Poland, according to the European statistical agency Eurostat.
Denmark, with a population of roughly 5.7 million, is the only EU country where pigs outnumber people, with 215 pigs to every 100 residents.