New report finds ski resort construction causing irreversible damage to Pirin World Heritage site; WWF

Bulgaria – Pirin National Park

Roadmap for developing the mountain sustainably outlined

Pirin National Park, one of Europe’s most important biodiversity hotspots, has suffered irreparable damage from the construction and expansion of Bansko ski resort, reveals a WWF report published today. The analysis finds that the ski resort, approved by Bulgaria’s government in 2000, has also compromised Pirin’s long-term economic value and delivered a mixed economic impact to date.

Amendments made to Pirin’s current management plan by Bulgaria’s government in December have now opened up to 48% of the park to construction activities. A new draft management plan, currently under dispute in court, would allow construction of ski infrastructure in an area 12.5 times bigger than the current area and logging in 60 per cent of the national park.

The report forcefully shows that these plans would cause irreversible damage to the World Heritage site and are based on a questionable business case.

Veselina Kavrakova, WWF-Bulgaria Country Head, said:

“Ski development in pursuit of short-term gains has already taken a shocking toll on Pirin. This report brings its damaging impact on both nature and Pirin’s long-term economic value into sharp focus.”

Source: New report finds ski resort construction causing irreversible damage t

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