Thursday, April 03, 2008

Foreign intervention needed to protect Bulgarian nature

If you are environmental activist, journalist or policy-making official in EU, please read this post - it's for you. I'll try to make it concise.
Greedy resort investors in alliance with corrupt Bulgarian authorities are quickly destroying the protected areas in our country. Illegal construction is underway in Rila National Park and likely to destroy it despite the fact that 140,000 people have signed a petition to protect the mountain. Another protected area, Strandja Nature Park which was about to be destroyed last year and was saved at the last moment after massive protests by citizens, is in danger again. The Municipality of the town of Tsarevo has presented a development plan that includes building over almost 100% of the coastal territory of Strandja Nature Park and legalization of the illegally constructed Golden Pearl resort complex. The Ministry of Environment and Water has, for now, rejected the proposed development plan and required the Municipality of Tsarevo to change it (source, in Bulgarian).
More details about the ongoing destruction of Bulgarian nature are given in this document.
Bulgarian civil society is too weak to mobilize itself to save the country's natural heritage. The widespread appalling and ever-increasing poverty forces most ordinary Bulgarians to devote all of their energy to physical survival. And even when citizens protest and demand the law to be applied, as in the above cases, their will is disregarded by arrogant Bulgarian authorities. Only pressure from outside, particularly the EU, is likely to have effect.
So if you can help in any way, please do it now, before it is too late.

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