Record-breaking financial support for the National Parks

The State Forests are going to devolve 65 million PLN to the National Parks. It’s twice as much money as last year.
08.09.2016 | The Coordination Centre for Environmental Projects

The State Forests are going to devolve 65 million PLN to the National Parks. It’s twice as much money as last year.

Agreements concerning financing the projects, submitted by directors of the National Parks, will be signed already in August. Just as in recent years the projects were submitted by almost all national parks out of which 20 passed the support mechanism qualification stage.

Package of activities, which this year will be covered by the subsidy from the forest fund, has been already ratified by the Director-General of the State Forests and the Ministry of the Environment.

For several years the State Forests has been cooperating with the National Parks by supporting financially various activities undertaken within the areas of parks. Funds come from the special pot, so called forest fund, created and supplied by the State Forests among others, in accordance with the Act on Forests. The amount of subsidy for the National Parks increases significantly year by year.

Types of activities covered by the subsidy is defined by the Act – these may be for example: operations, used for the conservation of nature performed pursuant to the forest management methods, or research studies conducted by the park or within its area. The detailed catalogue includes several hundreds of various activities, starting from implementing protective treatments, through conducting nurseries and afforestation, ending up with building small tourist infrastructure.

The National Parks make money on funds from various sources, but the base of their functioning constitute funds from the National Budget. This year the budget subsidy devolved by the Ministry of the Environment amounts to 86 million PLN – says Wiesław Krzewina, the Deputy Director for the State Forests’ Projects in the Coordination Centre For Environmental Projects- involved in the park support mechanism since this year. – Additional 65 million PLN from the forest fund will constitute essential aid and a huge financial boost for the National Parks. We hope that just as in recent years, this money will be well spent.

People and nature will benefit from the effects of this support. In many parks: young tree stands are renewed and nurtured, plants are protected against insects, activities related to the fire protection are conducted, for example: the purchase of equipment, the implementation of observation systems, the construction of vantage points and the development of the fire prevention. Scientists and park employees conduct researches regarding selected habitats, animal, plant and fungi species characteristic of particular areas.

Thanks to funds intended for tourist infrastructure purposes it is possible to construct watch towers, sheds and benches. Moreover, financial support made it possible to construct educational boards and renovate tourist or bike trail signs. Animals, which live within reserves, also received additional care, for example: the costs of infrastructure necessary to take care of European bisons in Białowieża, as well as equipment and operating costs of rehabilitation centres.

You can go to park’s website or simply visit the park in order to find out what was subsidized there. Such investments are marked as “Partially co-financed by the forest fund”.

The support is provided upon the request of the park director. Evaluator (Directorate-General of the State Forests in cooperation with the Coordination Centre For Environmental Projects) takes into consideration the purpose of proposed activities in a given region and reliability as well as rationality of planned costs.