Press Advisories

23. 5. 2007 13:31

The Government will be again deciding on the protection of Heřmanský stav locality

On Wednesday 23rd May, the Government will again be considering the setting up of an avian sanctuary in the locality of Heřmanský stav-Odra-Poolší, as part of the European Natura 2000 network.

This locality – the habitat of precious bird species such as little bittern (Ixobrychus minutus), common kingfisher (Alcedo athis), bluethroat (Luscinia svecia) and harrier (Circus aeruginosus variety) – has long been a subject of dispute between conservationists and economic ministries because of the intended construction of the Dolní Lutyně industrial zone and D47 motorway. It is on the list of protected landscape areas adopted by the European Union, but has not yet been officially granted such status by Czech Government, due to the controversy. A proposal has now been submitted to reduce the size of the area to be designated as protected.

The conservationists have even complained about inadequate protection in Brussels, which now demands explanation and remedy. Most of the forty avian sanctuaries in the Czech Republic were defined by the Government already in 2004.

According to the report attached to the submitted proposal, which will be discussed by the Government, from the expert point of view the Ministry for the Environment cannot succeed in defending the current situation before the European Commission, but comparing with earlier proposals it is proposing for approval a reduction of the size of the area to be protected. The harrier would be deleted from the list and the Government would ensure its protection by declaring the Česká Lípa – Doksy sandstone region a bird sanctuary. As for the other three species, the Czech Republic is not able to protect them adequately unless the Heřmanův stav locality is granted the status of a bird sanctuary.

The Ministry of Agriculture now agrees with the idea. According to the sponsors of the proposal, the Ministry of Transport supports the proposal to set up the avian sanctuary as quickly as possible, and intends to implement its plans regarding the D47 motorway in compliance with the legislation on nature and landscape protection. The proposal is however still opposed by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Ministry of Regional Development and the Moravian-Silesian regional authority, in view of the plan to build an industrial zone nearby.

The Ministry for the Environment regards these reservations as “unfounded in view of the fact that according to the original plan the site of the industrial zone lies outside the limits of the proposed bird sanctuary and because the Moravian-Silesian regional authority has pledged not to continue with preparations for the construction of the Dolní Lutyně industrial zone”.

Last November the Government and the Moravian-Silesian regional authority promised to stop preparing the Dolní Lutyně strategic zones in order to comply with the environmentalists’ conditions for the construction of the Hyundai car factory at Nošovice, and concluded an agreement to that effect with non-governmental organizations.

klh, čtk

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