Bosnia and Herzegovina, like other countries in the former Yugoslavia, is covered with the greatest natural resources, forests.
However, according to Bosnian experts, illegal logging is one of the main problems facing our country, and the consequences are felt now that we are suffocating in smog and polluted air, Avaz news portal reports.
Misconduct towards forests not only causes material damage, but also environmental, safety and health hazards. No one has accurate data on how many forests are “stolen” in Bosnia annually, but it is not difficult to assume that these are thousands of cubic meters.
The dean of the Faculty of Forestry in Sarajevo, Mirza Dautbasic, points out to Avaz news portal that the main problem is that no forest law has been adopted in the Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which would solve the problem in a short time.
“It’s a political problem. Illegal logging only shows how irresponsible the state, as the owner of the forest, is to its most important natural resource. Illegal logging can be prevented within three days. It is known where, who and how they intersect. It is easy to solve everything,” said Dautbasic. Eco-activists also lack precise data on the extent of damage caused by forest theft, but they have no dilemma that it is mismanaged in Bosnia.
Anes Podic from the Eco-Action Citizens Association explains that more than two-thirds of the BiH population is supplied with firewood.
“This year, the price of firewood increased, and there was a shortage somewhere. We have data that about two million cubic meters a year is stolen,” Podic said.
Experts explain that the Balkan forests are still large and rich, but that they are threatened with extinction. Therefore, floods are predicted to occur more frequently, landslides are triggered, and oxygen is less and less produced.
It takes years to work out who will manage the forest resources and who and how much revenue is collected.
During this time, the state is losing millions, stealing on its own, organized, planned and mostly unplanned.
While some get rich in forest theft because there is virtually no law, others, such as former veteran Fikret Dedic, end up in prison for stealing three meters of wood.