Dear lady and gentlemen,
Petr Nečas, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, Chair of ODS
Miroslava Němcová, Chair of the Parliament of the Czech Republic
Milan Štěch, Chair of the Senate of the Czech Republic
Tomáš Chalupa, Minister of Environment of the Czech Republic
Karel Schwarzenberg, Chair of TOP 09
Radek John, Chair of VV
Bohuslav Sobotka, Chair of ČSSD
Jan Stráský, Director of the Sumava National Park and Landscape Protected Area
Tomáš Tesař, Deputy Minister - Director of Nature protection Section
Bořivoj Šarapatka, Chair of the Subcommittee for nature and landscape protection, Parliament of the Czech Republic
Milan Šťovíček, Chair of the Committee for environment, Parliament of the Czech Republic
Radim Šrám, Chair of the Committee for environment AV ČR
Ivo Hána, Chair of the Board of scientific institutions of the Czech Republic
Institutions of the 6th section of biological and ecological science AV ČR Biological faculties of the Czech Republic
Dear ladies and gentlemen,
This letter expresses the concerns of scientists and experts who have been engaged in the problems concerning the environment and nature protection in the Šumava National Park for a long time. We are worried about the appointment of Mr. J. Stráský as NP Director and his current activities in this role.
We do not agree primarily with the following measures:
- The proposed declaration by Mr. J. Stráský of a calamitous state, which is required from Ministry of Environment. This step will lead to large-scale logging in areas that were left without any human interventions. These are areas where the bark beetle has already been receding, with no focal-points of its occurrence; thus, in areas where the forest is already in the initial state of restoration. This large-scale logging is completely useless and may even be harmful in such territories. Also, the proposed application of a chemical treatment is highly risky and unwanted in protected localities.
- Removing no-intervention areas in about 25 % of the National Park. These were established in the bark beetle combat plan after the tornado Kyrill in 2007. "The Crisis management" which is proposed by the current NP leaders will clearly lead to irreversible losses for nature protection and to NP liquidation as a large-scale area with the highest statute of protection.
- Large-scale planting of young trees in the up to now no-intervention areas including localities with sufficient natural forest regeneration. This would lead to the removal of evidence of natural forest regeneration after the bark beetle outbreak. ln addition, this would also be a waste of financial resources.
- Realization of projects for "hard tourism" in the I. and II. zones and with uncontrolled building of new tourist trail networks in the core zone of the Sumava National Park. The plan is to clear protected corridors, 100 meter wide, along these trails.
- Suppression of the role of scientists in the Sumava National Park Board. Reconstruction of the Board will lead to cancellation of the independent scientific section and reduces the number of representatives of scientific institutions. The danger is that this arrangement will allow for a predominance of populist and economic views on the management of Sumava National Park, as promoted by the current director. The consequences of this type of management can be permanent and may lead to irreversible damage of valuable ecosystems and habitats. This will lead to a loss of international prestige and negatively impact nature conservation in the country.
- The effort to withdraw, or at least delay, the application, for the "Diploma of the Council of Europe". This action clearly shows that the current park management does not want to use modern principles of conservation. In a substantial part of its territory, Sumava National Park still meets the requirements for inclusion in the prestigious IUCN category II. Sumava National Park ranks among the largest and currently most valuable territories in Central Europe, where there are unique habitats in which live rare and protected species of flora and fauna.
As scientists and experts we urge that the territory of the National Park should be respected. Also, we recommend the use of the latest scientific knowledge in protecting the cultural and natural heritage of the Park. We strongly urge that great weight should be given to the purpose for which the Sumava National Park was established. Otherwise, there is a threat of violation of the principles and ethics of nature conservation in general.
Prof. Ing. Hana Šantrůčková, CSc.
Chairman of ČSPE