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Andorre-la-Vieille © AFP-PHOTOPascal Pavani

Nestled in the Pyrenees, with mountains averaging 2,000 m in elevation, this tiny country of 465 km² only became a sovereign State in 1993. Article 31 of its Constitution states that “The State has the task of ensuring the rational use of the soil and of all the natural resources, so as to guarantee a befitting quality of life for all and, for the sake of the coming generations, to restore and maintain a reasonable ecological balance in the atmosphere, water and land, as well as to protect the autochthonous flora and fauna”.


Although Andorra La Vella – Europe’s highest-elevation capital – is sometimes dubbed in French the “supermarket principality”, this is mainly due to the large numbers of tourists who come in search of tax-free shopping (the country is not a member of the European Union). Pas de la Casa ski resort, for example, draws 8 million tourists a year. Local associations feel that a moratorium should be placed on the development of real estate and ski resorts, as well as on road construction: over 1.5 million vehicles cross the border each year.

A new national park, the Parc naturel régional des Pyrénées ariégeoises, is under development, encompassing the highest valleys and peaks of the Andorra-Spain border.


Centre Andorra Sostenible (centre for a sustainable Andorra) was created by the Ministry of the Environment in 2003, the same year which saw the founding of another Andorran ecology association, Andorra Sostenible.

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