Netherlands: The Catch of the Day is Plastic - At the current rate, it's estimated that it would take 79,000 more years to rid the oceans of plastic waste. Every year, almost five million tons of plastic waste winds up in the ocean. Now Fishing for Litter, an initiative started by fishermen, has declared war on marine pollution. Only a small portion of the plastic waste in the sea can be seen floating on the surface; most of the garbage lies on the seafloor. Many marine animals suffer painful deaths as a result. At the other end of the food chain, little is known about the effects the waste could have on humans. Now fishermen from the Netherlands have begun collecting the garbage that gets caught in their nets. The initiative is growing, with hundreds of fishermen now collecting tons of plastic each year. EU Elections: Denmark Shifts to the Right - Europe has voted - and, in a few countries, far-right parties have grown stronger. Denmark is among the countries to see major gains for right-wing eurosceptic parties. The Danish People's Party (DF) won the largest share of the vote, beating the governing Social Democrats into second place. The results will give the party three of the country's 13 seats in the European Parliament. The DF has, however, ruled out an alliance with anti-EU parties, citing the right-wing Front National in France as too extremist. Serbia: After the Floods - Last week's catastrophic floods in Serbia and Bosnia also brought with them new dangers: dredged up land-mines. These explosive relics from the Bosnian War of the 1990s, are creating extra dangers for rescue workers. Searching for land-mines is painstaking work, however, and the floods have dispersed them over large areas. Rescue crews already have enough to deal with, as much of Serbia and Bosnia's infrastructure has been destroyed and there's a real risk of landslides. Romania: Small Farmers Feeling the Squeeze - In Romania the agricultural industry is conforming to EU norms. Factory farms are favored, while small-scale farmers lose out. Most farmers in Romania are small-scale producers with a small patch of land. Their production methods are inefficient, and EU law caters to intensive farming, so family farms lose out. Now they also have to adhere to EU-wide hygiene standards, which are proving too expensive for many. As a result, some traditional foods -- including certain varieties of tomatoes and cheese -- could vanish from supermarket shelves. France: Strife with Speculators - Real estate prices on the Mediterranean island of Corsica are extortionate. A little cottage can set you back 400,000. The Corsican authorities have passed a law requiring anyone who wants to buy a house there to have lived on the island for at least five years. The move is a response to people from mainland France and abroad buying up properties as holiday homes, causing prices to spiral. As a result, many Corsicans can no longer afford to buy property there. But now a few communities are fighting back, and threatening to enforce pre-emption rights -- including the village of Cuttoli near Ajaccio, the birthplace of Napoleon.
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