Wilderness Policy

Ukrainian court stops the planning of the ski resort in the Svydovetsky massif for now.

On January 10th, 2018, a panel of judges from the court in Uzhhorod revoked the disputed orders authorizing of the Tyachivska and Rakhivska District State Administrations for the planning of a mega ski resort and determined that these were inappropriate actions of the District State Administrations.

Court decision

When making their judgments, they took into account that the approved detailed territorial plans were not provided even at the request of the court, had not undergone through strategic environmental assessment, which would ensure the safety of the planned activities for the environment and health. They also did not guarantee the proper participation of the public during the discussion of the planning. The planned ski resort also violated several chapters of the Carpathian Convention Protocol for Sustainable Tourism.

Mega Ski Resort for 28.000 daily tourists

The Tyachivska and Rakhivska District State Administrations had authorized in their original plan activities for the building of a ski resort for more than 28,000 daily tourists and the creation of 6 artificial reservoirs to ensure water needs of the resort. If to take into account that the daily water usage rate of 1 person is 200 litres, then one can imagine how much water will be needed for all visitors of this resort! And this does not include the volumes of water for artificial show producing and for economic needs.

The Svydovetsky massif of the Carpathians threatened by the planned ski resort

The planned area of the Resort is very close to the Carpathian Biosphere Reserve, member of the European Wilderness Network and UNESCO Natural World heritage site and is in about 60 km from Romania.

The Svydovetsky Mountain Range consists of unique glacial lakes, is part of the Emerald network, contains green corridors, is one of the most sensitive ecosystems of the Carpathians and is the headwaters of the river Tysa, the biggest tributary of the important European river Danube.

Broad national and international support against the planned ski resort

This case is also interesting, since it united a large circle of like-minded people. The goal of the nature advocates is to designate the Svydovetsky ridge as a nature reserve (protected area) and to support a sustainable social-economic development in the region.

Besides the support of the European Wilderness Society, several other prominent institutions and experts like Prof. Dr. Hannes Knapp and  spoke out against the planned ski resort and some even wrote letters to the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko and Ministry of Environment of Ukraine.

Due to the cooperation and information exchange with European Wilderness Society, Dr. Hannes Knapp, chairman of European Beech Forest Network also made his support statement.

Initiative group continues receiving support letters from different international organizations, addressed to the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko and Ministry of Environment of Ukraine. One of the latest received from the Bundestag deputy, Friedrich Ostendorff in German and Ukrainian:

Congratulations to the activists of Free Svydovec on the successful initiative to avert a useless and destructive mega-project of a ski resort in the Carpathians. The court ruling emphasizes the importance of local engagement of civil society.

European Wilderness Society published first the information on the building of the ski resort.


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