Most of Groningen’s earthquake bill is due to experts, reports and procedures

A condemned and shored-up cafe. Photo: Graham Dockery
A condemned and shored-up cafe. Photo: Graham Dockery

Just 10% of the money earmarked for earthquake damages claims in Groningen has been spent on mending cracks and shoring up buildings, the Volkskrant said on Friday.

Most of the money – nearly €23m in the past three months – was spent on inspections, experts, reports, second opinions and mediators, the paper said.

The paper bases its claim on the most recent report by the official damage coordination body. It shows the average repair bill was €656 but that it cost €6,000 to process the claim.

‘This is unbelievable,’ Susan Top, from lobby group Groningen Gasberaad, told the paper. ‘And this still does not include the psychiatric effect of the earthquakes. What on earth are we up to?’

Since 2013, Groningen residents have submitted 75,000 claims for damage caused by earthquakes which follow the extraction of natural gas. The total bill so far is €520m

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