• Polish logging in ancient forest breaches EU law – court advisor


    LUXEMBOURG: Poland’s rightwing government breached EU law by allowing logging in one of Europe’s last primeval forests, the legal advisor to the bloc’s top court said on Tuesday, setting up a new clash between Brussels and Warsaw. Logging in the Bialowieza Forest began in May 2016 but the European Commission took Poland to court last year arguing that it was destroying a forest that boasts unique plant and animal life. Yves Bot, advocate general to the European Court of Justice, said the decisions by the Polish government to allow logging in forest “infringe EU law,” and that Warsaw has “failed to fulfill its obligations” under the bloc’s environment rules. The logging was “liable to result in a deterioration of the breeding sites of protected species.” The Luxembourg-based EU court often, but not always, follows the legal opinions of the advocate general when making its final decision. Its ruling is expected at a later date. Bialowieza includes one of the largest surviving parts of the primeval forest that covered the European plain 10,000 years ago. The vast woodland, which straddles the border with Belarus, is home to 800 European bison, the continent’s largest mammal.



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