Amur branch of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Russia announces the start of logging in northern Primorye forests, which play a key role in maintaining populations of a Red tiger logging company ZAO "Les Export" states that logging conducted lawfully.
The struggle for Bikin
The conflict between the WWF and JSC "Les Export" began in May 2011, when the timber company has leased two sites in the lower reaches of the Bikin River in northern Primorye, and planned to rent a third site in the middle reaches of the river in Pozharskaya nut-harvesting zones and reservations of the "Sredneussuriysky."
Against cuts in these important areas for tigers were environmentalists led by WWF. As a result, in July 2011, the issue of deforestation in a bikini was the subject of the meeting, chaired by First Deputy Prime Minister Victor Zubkov.
According to the list of orders made up Zubkov after the meeting, WWF and JSC "Les Export" were to determine the "territory in return areas Pozharskaya nut-fishing zone and created the state reserve" Sredneussuriysky. "Ministry of Environment was asked to examine the establishment of a state of the Bikin River Basin natural reserve of federal significance "in order to preserve key habitat of the Amur tiger," as well as measures for the conservation and recovery of the population in the Red Book species according to the "National Action Plan for tiger conservation."
According to the document, a report on the measures taken on the instructions had to be given before the end of 2011, but its contents have not been introduced to the media.
According to the WWF, despite the agreement reached at the meeting with Zubkov, currently ZAO "Les Export" started cutting in the disputed areas. Of particular concern of environmentalists is because in this area is the only ecological corridor linking the Chinese and Russian Amur tigers.
"Research conducted by JSC" Les Export "industrial logging completely eliminate the possibility of migratory movements of tigers and wild ungulates from Russia to China and, therefore, the hope for the tiger population within the former range in China", — the press-service of WWF.
As the head of the forest program of the Amur branch of WWF Russia Denis Smirnov, permit logging in the Bikin issued forest management Primorsky Krai.
"Clear signs of preparations JSC" Les Export "user logging in the disputed areas were found in early April., But only after more than a month after our formal request and repeated reminders to answer, forest management has admitted that the development project has received positive expert "- said Smirnov.
In addition, according to the fund, not giving up logging in protected forests, JSC "Les Export", also added to their lease areas in the Russian government proposed to replace.
Cuttings in the law
According to RIA Novosti Deputy General Director of JSC "Les Export" Viktor Kalinowski, logging in the Bikin River conducted in accordance with the law and agreed upon at the regional and federal level.
"We had a committee on the subject of the Khabarovsk department worked a month, we checked the prosecutor's office, and no one has found any violations. At a meeting with Zubkov we were not denied logging in these areas. Following the meeting, the group has been collected on the subject, we were offered other sites, but they are too far for us it was uncomfortable, "- said Kalinowski.
According to him, in response to the protests of environmentalists, JSC "Les Export" from below the work area in a bikini, and also introduced a lower mode logging.
"In the area of legal and illegal logging and held up to us, but we want to preserve the environment. Especially for the tigers, we left the area, pass, so communication with the population of China will not be broken … WWF funded from abroad, profitable penetration international market of our products, "- said the source.
In forestry administration of Primorsky Territory, RIA Novosti declined to comment, saying that management is only upon written request. The answer to this can be obtained in a few days.