Romania going through authorized motion over destruction of Europe’s final pure forests

The Romanian authorities has repeatedly failed to satisfy its authorized obligations to guard Europe’s final pure forests from logging. Along with EuroNatur and Agent Inexperienced, we filed a criticism in opposition to the nation’s authorities to the European Fee within the hope of stopping the continuing destruction. Now, the European Fee has introduced it can pursue authorized motion in opposition to Romanian authorities.

How Romanian state forestry has damaged EU legislation

For years, Romania’s state forestry administration, Romsilva, has carried out logging operations in protected woodlands that make as much as two-thirds of unspoilt forests throughout the European Union. These areas are a part of the EU Natura 2000 community and as such, authorities are required to hold out environmental influence assessments earlier than logging operations start. Nonetheless, in some circumstances the environmental influence assessments, which ought to be carried out beforehand when logging is being deliberate, happen years after logging will get underway.

Round 300,000 hectares of Romanian woods are listed as Natura 2000 websites and guarded animals similar to massive carnivores, black stork, owls, woodpeckers, bats and beetles rely upon them for survival.

With out correct evaluation of the influence of logging on these distinctive websites, the way forward for these threatened species is in danger.

ClientEarth wildlife lawyer Ewelina Tylec-Bakalarz stated: “Systematic logging in Natura 2000 websites with out efficient evaluation of its influence on these areas is a transparent violation of EU legislation. This can be a widespread downside throughout Romania.”

Gabriel Schwaderer, Government Director of EuroNatur explains: “The continuing nature conservation drama in Romania is among the most urgent environmental crises in Europe.”

Taking motion to guard the forests

Our work to guard Poland’s Bialowieza Forest from unlawful logging proves how efficient European legislation might be within the safety of our continent’s pure treasures.

We’re utilizing that very same authorized technique to cease the continuing and deliberate destruction of tens of 1000’s of hectares of its protected old-growth bushes and primeval forests in Romania.

In September final yr, along with EuroNatur and Agent Inexperienced, we filed a criticism in opposition to the nation’s authorities with the European Fee. Now the European Fee has confirmed it can pursue authorized motion.

ClientEarth lawyer Ewelina Tylec-Bakalarz stated: “The destruction of Romanian forests is a large systemic downside far exceeding in scale the unlawful logging of Poland’s Bialowieza forest, which was the premise of our authorized problem three years in the past.

“The Romanian authorities has repeatedly didn’t fulfil its obligations to guard its forests below numerous European environmental legal guidelines. By opening infringement proceedings in opposition to Romania, the European Fee is sending a transparent sign that it takes this downside very significantly. This is a vital warning that Romania should cease blatantly disregarding its authorized obligation to guard these distinctive forests.”

What occurs subsequent?

The European Fee have launched infringement proceedings in opposition to Romania for unlawful logging inside Nature 2000 protected websites and for permitting illegally harvested timber to enter the EU market – a breach of the EU Timber Regulation.

The Romanian authorities has only one month to reply to the issues elevate by the European Fee. The Fee will then resolve whether or not to take additional steps in the direction of bringing the case earlier than the EU’s highest court docket.

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