Stop Illegal Loggers From Destroying Ancient Woodlands

Target: Marcian Bleahu, Minister of Environment for Romania

Goal: Address issue of rampant deforestation in Romania and ensure that illegal loggers are brought to justice.

The virgin forests of Romania are in danger of being destroyed. These forests are one of the last places in Europe where one may encounter wild lynx, bears or wolves in a landscape virtually unchanged since the last glacial period. Yet these primeval forests are rapidly disappearing, at the rate of over 62,000 hectares a year, as illegal loggers carve up the protected woodlands for their valuable old-growth timber.

While Romania’s illegal logging issues have been ongoing for decades, environmental groups are reporting that the problem has only worsened in the past few years. Two hundred years ago, this Eastern European nation was richly forested with over 8.5 million hectares of woodland, accounting for over 36 percent of its territory. Now barely one quarter of Romania remains forested, and that number continues to dwindle at a frightening rate despite the fact that much of this wilderness is now protected under law.

The Romanian government must address this problem by forbidding the sale of government-owned woodlands to private citizens and by arresting and punishing loggers found guilty of cutting down trees in protected areas. This unique ecosystem must be saved before these remaining primeval forests and their wild inhabitants disappear forever. Sign the petition below to take a stand and demand that all illegal logging be brought to an immediate end.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Minister Bleahu,

Romania is losing over 62,000 hectares of pristine woodland each year, even in such protected areas as Semenic National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which contains some of Europe’s last few primeval beech forest habitats. Illegal logging here and at other protected sites is threatening these forests and the many wild species that call them home. It is absolutely crucial that you fully investigate these illicit logging incidents and punish those found responsible.

For too many years, the Romanian government has turned a blind eye to illegal logging or has attempted to cover it up by selling government-owned woodlands to private citizens and companies. We demand that you do what you can to protect the remaining wilderness areas in your country and put an end to all illegal activities threatening them.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Crustmania

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