[fyeg_gen-l] Petition - road building threatens unique natural reservation

Marina Barbalata marina at fyeg.org
Tue Dec 22 13:36:21 CET 2009

Dear all,

Please take a look at the petition below on stopping a road building through a unique natural reservation in Europe situated in the heart of the Romanian Carpathians. Feel free to distribute the petition.

Many thanks & happy holidays,
Marina Barbalata


Dear Minister,

Romanian Carpathians are home to about 50% of all bears, 35% of all
wolves and 30% of all lynx in Europe (excluding Russia). Retezat
mountains in the SW Carpathians shelter the last intact forest
landscape (IFL) of the European temperate climate zone. Within the
zone, this IFL remains the largest natural habitat (100187 ha) for
large mammals such as brown bear, lynx and wolves. A current national
project involves the construction of national road  66A through the
South-Eastern part of the IFL that shelters impressive populations of
big mammals such as brown bears, wolfs and lynx, and includes
significant areas with ancient forests, endemic, rare or endangered

The Romanian IFL is a natural treasure that should be protected by
law and meant for conservation, research and ecotourism. It is the last
remaining large mountain area in Europe that is not fragmented by roads
and where pristine wilderness thrives undisturbed.

National and European legislation are in favor of nature
conservation and do not permit constructions such as road 66A to be
constructed in strictly protected areas and the Natura 2000 network.
Road 66A will lead to the loss of the IFL and will affect 3 strictly
protected areas of The Domogled-Cerna Valley National Park and 3 Natura
2000 sites. A section of this road has already been built illegally
through 3km of the Retezat National Park. It creates complete
fragmentation of the large mammals habitats because the road is edged
by 4 meter vertical walls and the existing animal passages are
insufficient and unusable.Route 66A is meant to link the cities of Petrosani and Baile
Herculane. There are already alternative roads to 66A that link the 2
cities, avoiding the protected areas and the IFL. The construction is
very expensive, it is funded with public money and I do not agree to it
being continued.
I believe that economical rehabilitation in this region through
construction of 66A is a poisoned promise of the local and central
authorities. The reasons for my belief are that:

- National road 7A that links Petrosani to Olt Valley was built
several decades ago and yet did not bring any benefit to local
communities. Instead the only activity taking place is deforestation
along this road through the Parang mountains Natura 2000 site just
across Retezat mountains. This is a crime against nature and it should
not be allowed to happen in Retezat too.- Baile Herculane mountain resort is already intersected by both a
national and a european road and has been for many hundreds of years.
Yet still the city is in a continuous state of degradation.

Therefore, I refuse to believe that another roadway through the IFL,
2 protected areas and 3 Natura 2000 sites will release the region from
poverty. It seems clear to me that this road would rather compromise
any solid chance to assure welfare for the local communities through
conservation and sustainable tourism. This area must be assigned for
protection, study and sustainable tourism.

Dear minister, only you have the power to decide. I am asking you:

-          not to grant the environmental permit for segment 3 of national road 66A - in order to fully stop the construction

-          to strictly protect by legislation the entire Retezat Intact Forest Landscape

Thank you!

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