Decision due on felling plan for Poland's primeval forest
PR dla Zagranicy
Minister of the Environment Jan Szyszko is due to take a decision on Sunday on a controversial plan to fell sections of the Białowieża Forest in eastern Poland.
Demonstrators in Kraków protest against the proposed felling of parts of the Białowieza Forest, 12 March/ Photo: N.Hodge
The State Forests National Forest Holding has argued that dead wood has led to an upsurge in pests such as the European spruce bark beetle, necessitating a major felling initiative.
However, environmentalists demonstrated in 11 cities across Poland on Saturday, arguing that the proposed felling is unnecessary, and that the forest's ecosystem should not be interfered with in this regard.Opponents to the felling include Greenpeace Poland, the Greenmind Foundation and the World Wildlife Fund.
Management plans for the forest had allowed for a restricted amount of logging between 2012 and 2021.
However, foresters have already cleared 57,000 cubic metres - 90 percent of what is permitted - prompting requests for an additional quota.
Over 300,000 cubic metres would be felled in the new initiative. (nh/pk)