DAWN in Bialowieza forest, and the bellowing of deer in rut competes with the buzz of chainsaws. The rival rackets sum up an increasingly ill-tempered argument over the Polish half of the ancient woods that straddle the frontier between Poland and Belarus. The row has reverberated beyond the forest’s borders, and indeed beyond Poland’s. It pits competing visions of environmental stewardship and economic development, and of Poland’s path under the right-wing Law and Justice (PiS) party.
Last month the European Commission asked the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to fine Poland for ignoring an earlier order to halt logging in parts of the forest protected under EU law—in effect, nearly all of the 60,000 hectares of it that lie in Poland. In July UNESCO, the guardian of the planet’s human and natural wonders, urged the government to end logging or risk Bialowieza’s demotion from a world heritage site to one “in danger”,…Continue reading
Source: Europe Economic News