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Poland has started logging in the ancient Bialowieza forest, which includes some of Europe’s last primeval woodland, despite fierce protests from environmental groups battling to save the World Heritage site.
“The operation began today,” national forest director Konrad Tomaszewski said of the plan to harvest wood from non-protected areas of one of the last vestiges of the immense forest that once stretched across Europe.
He said the goal was “to stop forest degradation” – by combating what the environment ministry says is a spruce bark beetle infestation – and protect tourists and rangers from harm by cutting down trees that risk falling on trails.
But environmental campaigners warn that the tree chopping will destroy an ecosystem unspoiled for more than 10,000 years that is home to the continent’s largest mammal, the European bison, and to its tallest trees.
Campaigners have taken issue with the government rationale for the project, saying the beetle’s presence does not pose any threat to the forest’s ecosystem.
The Bialowieza project is the latest action by Poland’s new rightwing government to draw criticism at home and abroad, including an overhaul of the country’s top court and legislation strengthening state control over public broadcasters.
But a recently-passed logging law to allow work to begin on the old-growth forest has divided families, and led to death threats against campaigners and allegations of an “environmental coup” by state interests linked to the timber trade. The logging in Białowieża is expected to raise about 700m złotys (£124m), and pave the way for extensive and more lucrative tree clearances.
Sources say that internal government discussions have already begun on extending the new timber regime to the national park, which covers 17% of the forest and has been untouched by humans since the ice age. masterclasses pleasure and pain: a music industry workshop $120, Saturday 18 June, Hobart. This one is for music lovers and industry folk attending Dark Mofo who want some business with their pleasure
Mirosław Stepaniuk says he was sacked as director of Białowieża’s national park shortly after Polish elections six months ago because of his support for turning the whole forest into a protected conservation area.
originally posted by: Metallicus
a reply to: cuckooold
Al Gore and his big money buddies should just pay them not to chop it down. If a person is starving I am not going to judge what they do to feed their family unless it illegal.