Poland says compliant with EU court order against ancient forest logging

2017-11-21 19:46
(File, AFP)

(File, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Warsaw - Polish Environment Minister Jan Szyszko on Tuesday insisted that Warsaw is already "100%" compliant with an EU injunction to stop logging in one of Europe's last primeval forests after the bloc's top court threatened heavy fines.

The Luxembourg-based European Court of Justice has warned Poland's right-wing government to "immediately" stop logging in the Bialowieza Forest or face fines of up to €100 000 a day.

Activists, scientists and other critics allege Poland is engaged in commercial logging but the government insists it is only felling trees for public safety reasons in accordance with the EU injunction.

The EU court did allow for exceptions, saying: "Poland must immediately cease its active forest management operations in the Bialowieza Forest, except in exceptional cases where they are strictly necessary to ensure public safety".

The problem lies in the word "necessary," which Poland has interpreted more broadly than the EU court.

The government began logging in May last year, saying it was clearing dead trees to contain damage caused by a spruce bark beetle infestation, as well as to fight the risk of forest fires and preserve road traffic.

Bialowieza includes one of the largest surviving parts of the primeval forest that covered the European plain 10 000 years ago.

The vast woodland, which straddles the border with Belarus, is home to unique plant and animal life, including 800 European bison, the continent's largest mammal.

Read more on:    eu  |  poland  |  conversation

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.