Tag Archives: Kronospan

Thomas Waitz MEP and Agent Green witnessing illegal logging by Romanian state forests – video

Fact-finding trip by Thomas Waitz, MEP, with Agent Green reveals that illegal logging in Natura 2000 areas continues regardless of EU infringement proceedings
 
Thomas Waitz, Member of the European Parliament, and Gabriel Paun, President of Agent Green, are currently (October 10, 2020) on a field mission in Romania checking Natura 2000 sites for compliance with EU Natura 2000 legislation. In a video message, Gabriel Paun and Thomas Waitz reported that they witnessed destructive and illegal logging on locations that are theoretically protected by EU’s Natura 2000 legislation, including Domogled – Valea Cernei National Park.
 
In the Domogled – Valea Cernei National Park / Natura 2000 area, they even discovered logging by the state-owned forest company Romsilva on a state-owned property on which the Bucharest High Court suspended all logging permits earlier this year.
 
In other words: state-paid foresters are pushing forward cutting down of state-owned trees in a national park and Natura 2000 site despite the country’s Supreme Court suspending the forest management plans in the part of the very forest district.
 

At the same time, the European Commission is pursuing infringement proceedings against the Romanian state after EuroNatur, Client Earth and Agent Green filed complaints about the systematic destruction of forests in Romania’s Natura 2000 areas and illegal logging.

 
The fact that the logging continues even against High Court ruling unmasks the green washing by the romanian forest industry: forestry officials and industry-related professors have recently outbid each other claiming that the romanian forestry is doing better and acting more sustainable than the foresters in “the west”.
 
Thomas Waitz and Gabriel Paun did also trace a wood truck from the Natura 2000 Ținutul Pădurenilor site to the factory of Austrian chipboard company Kronospan in Sebes. The yard of Kronospan factory is filled with logs from large trees, mainly beech. Kronospan, the world’s largest chipboard producer, claims on the respective website: “We ensure that suppliers do not use wood from national parks, natural preserves, virgin forests and other conservation areas.” This is apparently in severe contradiction to the recent observations. 
 
More details you can view on this video:
 
The location of the primary platform where the illegal wood cut in Domogled National Park is loaded in despite the High Court / ICCJ suspended all logging permissions in the area.

Romania: How Log Yards Hide the Destruction of Europe’s Ancient Forests

EIA report takes a closer look behind Romania’s forest industry
EuroNatur and Agent Green call for logging ban in all Romanian national parks

The new EIA report Behind the Scenes takes a detailed look at how the Austrian timber companies Holzindustrie Schweighofer, Kronospan and Egger continue to fuel the destruction of Europe’s last old growth forests. Holzindustrie Schweighofer pledged five years ago not to source timber from national parks or protected areas. The report shows how log yards hide the destruction of Europe’s last primeval and old growth forests in Romania…

EIA used Romania’s public timber tracking website, Forest Inspector, to study the sourcing operations of several Schweighofer suppliers as they cut wood in two national parks in Romania’s Carpathian Mountains. EIA visited these sites and documented large-scale, sometimes illegal, commercial logging in both the Rodna Mountains and Calimani National Parks.

According to data compiled by EIA, companies that supply Schweighofer have harvested at least 35,000 cubic meters from these two parks in an 18-month time period through June 2018. On-the-ground research tracked logs from these parks to local wood depots that supply Schweighofer. Schweighofer’s extensive sourcing from third-party log yards – approximately 45% of its Romanian log purchases – exposes the company to wood from national parks, as well as to illegal logging and other unsustainable practices.

EIA also found that other large multinational companies in Romania, like Kronospan and Egger, have similar sourcing issues. EIP points out, that the lack of real traceability to the forest origin by all these companies, in a country like Romania with an elevated risk of corruption, means that their purchases fuel the illegal and unsustainable logging that continues to erode Romania’s rich biodiversity and the economic future of its timber processing industry.

Romania’s Carpathian Mountains contain the majority of the remaining old growth forests in Europe. EIA: All foreign companies operating in Romania have a responsibility to enact real traceability for their wood purchases and to stop abetting the destruction of Europe’s last great forests.

NGOs EuroNatur Foundation and Agent Green are calling on the Romanian government to completely ban logging in all national parks and to improve implementation of its primeval forests protection programme. Only this would give the guarantee that destruction of Europe’s last large primeval forests is stopped. In all Romanian national parks large scale, industrial exploitation of wood is omnipresent. Almost half of the park’s surface is designated as “buffer zones”, which actually means: no protection. Both by the government and Romanian state forestry Romsilva, who are running 12 of 13 national parks, are continuously granting logging permissions in all national parks.
 
Also old growth forests are being logged with official approvals. According to the world nature conservation organisation IUCN the primary objectives of national parks are nature conservation, science, recreation and education. Thus the vast logging operations in Romania’s parks violate international standards. „Europe’s biggest nature crises in Romania will intensify if the Romanian government continues to ignore nature protection objectves and to primarily serve the interests of the logging industry,“ says Gabriel Schwaderer, executive director of EuroNatur Foundation.
 
Agent Green is filing harsh critique about the ongoing  delay of the full operation of the online timber tracking website “Forest Inspector”. All the planned expanded functions of the portal have been realized, but the Ministry of Waters and Forests has repeatedly delayed its full operation. The fact that the portal still runs with limited functions  allows the continuous degradation of forests, Gabriel Paun, President of Agent Green says.
 
“No promise and no commitment can be respected as long as the issue of log yards is not solved by expanding the functions of the forest inspector system by creating a real-time electronic register accessible to the public. The timber robbery has even scuffed the forests of national parks. Not even this 1% of the country’s surface that should have remained intact, is in proper shape” added Paun.
 
Protest action by Agent Green and EuroNatur in Romania’s wounded Domogled national park (May 2018)

Illegal logging contest in Carpathians last virgin forests

Agent Green calls on Romanian Government and EU to take urgent action

1386 hectares of state owned virgin forests discovered in year 2005 in Tarcu Mountains Natura 2000 site (Carpathians) are being currently illegally logged with the consent of Resita forest district breaking the forest law.

At least 28.951 m3 of wood have been extracted in the past 5 years by Susai Servcom from a single slope. The usual clients of the logging company are:

– Kronospan (Austrian)
– Holzindustrie Schweighofer (Austrian)
– Losan (Spanish)
– Massiv (USA)

Agent Green calls on the Environmental Ministry to immediately end logging in the Tarcu Mountains Natura 2000 site and to protect virgin forests in general by a logging moratorium.

As sites of highest European protection value are progressively devastated the EU needs to take action against violations of European regulations. Agent Green has launched an international petition to save Romania’s last virgin forests.

Agent Green urges Kronospan, Holzindustrie Schweighofer, Losan and Massiv to publicly commit to refusing wood harvested from virgin and quasi forests.

TARCU MOUNTAINS NATURA 2000 SITE, ROMANIA: Logging in virgin forest in the Natura 2000 site Tarcu Mountains, which is protected by both the EU's Habitat and Bird Directive. Romania hosts 2/3 of EU's virgin forest remains. But logging is progressing rapidly, driven forward by greed and corruption of timber and logging industry and neglectance of authorities.
Logging of virgin forest, Tarcu Mountains Natura 2000 site.