The environment minister and the speaker of parliament clash over national park zoning

The plan is to increase the non-interference zone to 50 percent.

Muránska Planina National ParkMuránska Planina National Park (Source: James Thomson)

The recent announcement by Speaker of Parliament Boris Kollár (Sme Rodina) concerning the halt to the zoning of the Muránska Planina National Park in central Slovakia has raised some opposition.

While Environment Minister Ján Budaj (OĽaNO) has referred to the government’s programme statement, environmental activists are questioning the argument used by Kollár which echoes the fear expressed by the municipalities that it would lead to job losses.

Related articleSlovakia urged to think green after pandemic Read more 

The fear of job losses voiced

Kollár was responding to a plan produced by the Environment Ministry and the Agriculture Ministry to increase the size of the non-interference zone from the current 13 percent to 50 percent. This means that the area where forestry interference, hunting or construction is not permitted will increase four times.

As much as 93 percent of the zone would be situated on land administered by the Lesy SR state-run forestry company. The remaining 7 percent is in the hands of non-state owners with whom the state wants to discuss the plan.

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