May 16, 2023, Sf. Gheorghe, Romania — Greenpeace activists are demanding that the European Parliament acts for biodiversity, not for the hunting industry lobby. Greenpeace requests that the authorities undertake a comprehensive analysis of the situation and implement long-term solutions that prioritise cohabitation, rather than catering to the demands of the hunting industry lobby seeking larger „preventive quotas” and derogations from the European Habitat Directive.
Members of the European Parliament Committee for Petitions are coming to Romania to evaluate the tripled killing quota of bears proposed by Romania’s Ministry of the Environment, local authorities, and hunters’ associations.
Under the European Habitat Directive and other four International Conventions, bears are covered under Annex II as a strictly protected species. This means that member states must take necessary measures to maintain or restore bear populations in their natural range.
Instead of protecting bears, hunting industry lobbying efforts seek to impose “preventative quotas” to reintroduce the commercial practices of trophy hunting and safari tourism, replacing attempts for sustainable management of human-bear interactions with a cruel and ineffective pursuit: the random killing the bears.
Meanwhile, the Romanian Ministry of the Environment still has no official census of the bear population in the country and does little to prevent illegal and unsustainable logging that destroys their habitats. This drives bears closer to human communities where they often find easily accessible food due to touristic feeding points and poor waste management. Instead of implementing “preventative quotas” as an ineffective, barbaric and harmful stop-gap measure, the authorities should focus on proven solutions like electric fences and improved waste management and, even more importantly, address the root causes: deforestation, habitat destruction, and excessive exploitation of forests.
About Mobile Rescue Station: Carpathian Expedition
The Mobile Rescue Station, a well-equipped transportable activists base, is currently embarking on a 40-day expedition to the heart of the forest, visiting one of Europe’s last remaining bastions of wild nature in Romania, Ukraine, Hungary, Slovakia and Poland. Diving into not just the raw natural world but also into the complex relationship of humans with this area, they meet and talk with biologists, rangers, local activists, communities and authorities. To complement these varied perspectives, the activists also witness the devastation of old-growth and virgin forests, all with a goal of documenting and exposing the weaknesses of current conservation systems and to demand the urgent expansion of strict protection areas.
Photos by Răzvan Dima ©Greenpeace: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1wLqk4dqz3fH8NP72xFH0zqMYUVUVurnO?usp=sharing
For press inquiries, please contact:
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National Press Contact:
Romania – Cristian Neagoe, [email protected], +40 728 987 982