How Slovakia destroys nature in spite of being country’s biggest and only real treasure

Slovakia destroys nature
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Unlike other posts on my site, which are mainly about places that you must visit, this one will be different today. It won’t be about the beautiful place you have to see or cannot miss, but about what remained here after it was totally destroyed and devastated last week by dumb human activity powered by even dumber EU funding finances programme.

I would not write anything about this if I would not have decided to get back to my home country last year after living in Prague for the last 8 years. But I did, I bought a flat in my hometown Kosice (in a district where I have never been before actually) and I found one beautiful place located just a few meters from where my new flat was located.

Slovakia destroys nature - 1
Slovakia is devastating nature like developing country

Slovakia Destroys Nature

Well, it was nothing really special to boast with, nothing like the high mountain range, or peaks with breathtaking views, huge waterfalls, turquoise sea, or dense forest. It was just a great amount of trees that grew up on the banks of the river Hornad.

They were growing here 25 long years until they grew up into a real jungle that was full of birds, fish and life. Before, I have never ever seen such big birds as a heron in the wild. And I have never thought I would see them from my flat’s windows.

Slovakia destroys nature - a heron on a tree which is not growing there anymore
Slovakia destroys nature – a heron on a tree which was destroyed as well (sorry for bad photo quality, but my photo camera has a limited zoom). It’s how I used to see them from my window.

During the nights, I was listening to the sounds that are more typical of the jungle or rainforest, rather than of the cities, or urban suburbs. During the days, I was watching big heron flying from one tree to another.

And during the hot weather we all were well protected by the shadow of the trees, while walking through the cold waters of the river. Oh, how hot last summer was! I can’t even imagine such hot summer without those trees!

Slovakia destroys nature - hiding in the shadow of the trees
Slovakia destroys nature – hiding in the shadow of the trees

It was a place where thousands of people were spending their free time every week, relaxing, walking, fishing, or just sitting and talking, enjoying their lives at the river.

But now… it’s gone! The government decided it is better to earn ridiculous €3500,- and cut 1300 live trees rather than leaving it as it was… for free… for people… for animals… for “useless” nature… Unfortunately, this is by far not the only case in Slovakia that is threatened the same way, all the rivers are the same.

The facts

Minister of environment of the Slovak Republic (Peter Žiga) has never cared about nature. He studied at the University of Economics in Bratislava, specialization in Business Management and MONEY is what he was dealing with only. It is very interesting (just coincidence?) that he was a Director and CEO of a private company which main business was a timber trade. Since he is Minister, this company is enjoying their best times! Since he is Minister, Slovak nature is having its worst time ever!

Slovakia destroys nature - what remained
Slovakia destroys nature – what remained

I don’t think that Slovakia has something to offer apart from its nature. It is unique and used to be unspoilt.

But now it is crying like never before, it is crying like rainforests in Madagascar and other developing countries, that are cut because of palm and rapeseed oil, which has no value at all.

Slovakia destroys nature - this is how it looked like before
Slovakia destroys nature – this is how it looked like before

Sorry to bother you, but our stupid government and useless Slovak Environment Centre forced me to write the first negative post on my blog.

I hope that at least few of them will read this and then wake up!

Sign the petition online

Even you can help to force our politicians to do some changes in the Act and stop destroying OUR nature. Just fill in the form and send the details to sign the online petition here: http://www.ekoforum.sk/peticia/zive-rieky (in Slovak). For more information, related videos and pictures, visit my Facebook page about this human stupidity.

Some more pictures:

Slovakia destroys nature - 8

Slovakia destroys nature - 9

Slovakia destroys nature - only "sick" trees were cut
Slovakia destroys nature – only “sick” trees were cut

Slovakia destroys nature - 11

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Julius

I am someone who left his open-spaced cubicle after spending there 8 years of his life. Someone who started to live more outside! :) I am in travel blogging since 2010 and with Traveltipy I am going to conquer the world :)

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28 Responses

  1. Julius says:

    Just adding a new video about Slovak nature – again in Košice. Massive “secure” cut off thousands of trees https://youtu.be/260fxmV9ZWw

  2. Juraj says:

    Hospodár ..hospodári ..na rieke .v lese na poli.Človek nehospodár, neznalý veci primitívny a lenivý získať správne informácie je ochotný obetovať veľa času a energie a neváha s tým ísť až na medzinárodné forum len aby sa zviditeľnil.Je to smutné koľko inteligentných a aj svetaskúsených ľudí naletí na takéto lacné a neodborné až primitívne hlúpe konanie ::: Prerastené brehové porasty sú vážnym ohrozením pri veľkých povodniach .Musia sa pravidelne rezať a udržiavať aby koreňová sústava ktorá spevňuje brehy bola v optimálnej forme.Takže nie je o čom básniť.Jediné čo sa dá vytknúť správcovi povodia že nekonal pravidelne .

  3. ms says:

    Porovnanie s dažďovým pralesom je pritiahnuté za vlasy. Sám spomínate, že tieto stromy na brehu rástli 25 rokov, čo tam teda bolo pred tým? ..zrejme dosť podobný pohľad, ako teraz po výrube?
    25 rokov sa môže zdať veľa, ale z pohľadu prírody je ale 25 rokov nič. Ak nevybetónujú brehy, nepostavia múr ako v bj, bude to ešte hádam dobre. Treba si uvedomiť, ak rozprávame o rúbani stromov ako o ničení prírody, že aká bola príroda pred 50 – 100 rokmi – mnoho dnešných lesov možno ani neexistovalo (to je pekne vidieť na niektorých fotkách zo svetových vojen). Vyrástli počas jedného ľudského života, možno mnohé boli umelo založené. Tam kde sa teraz vyťaží drevo, vyrastie nové…možno ešte počas života nášho, alebo našich detí ( teda ak tomu rastu nebude nikto brániť, kde nevyrastie, bude to v podstate pôvodný stav).
    Tu by hádam stálo za to zistiť, čo bude pokračovať po tomto výrube.
    Lebo tento článok má zatiaľ výraz sebeckého nariekania, že tu a teraz mi niečo vzali, čo vlastne ani nebolo moje a len náhodou to tam existovalo. Mal som podobné pocity, keď som videl pred rokmi v priebehu krátkeho času vyrúbať hádam 1/4 kopca, na ktorý máme výhľad z domu. Teraz je to ešte stále viditeľné, ale zároveň je vidieť, ako už rastú nové stromy a za nejaký čas bude “rana” zacelená úplne. Život človeka je krátky aby vedel takéto drobné škrabančeky (ak sa to vôbec dá takto nazvať) pre prírodu vyhodnotiť objektívne.

  4. Bruno Ditri says:

    How about sending your report to: http://www.eea.europa.eu/address.html

  5. Peter says:

    Fotodokumentacia je spracovana tendencne. Iba 2 fotografie zachytavaju ten isty pohlad. Na nich okrem drobneho vyrubu krovin vidno stale tie iste stromy, ibaze bez listov. Zimne zabery posobia samozrejme horsie a o to autorovi asi slo. Zvysne fotky nemaju ziadnu vypovedaciu hodnotu, hodia sa vsak k clanku – hromada nazvazaneho dreva, vesely bocian v lete, smutny bocian v zime, muz s dietatom v riecke… klasicka manipulacia a brnkacka na city. Autor si zjavne myli protipovodnovu upravu koryta a okolia rieky s “devastacnym” vyrubom. Ale to mu uplne staci ku generalizacnemu nadpisu Slovakia destroy nature…? Zjavne ma nulovy vztah k tejto krajine, ked o nej napise hanlivy clanok v anglictine a zavesite to este na medzinarodny portal. Na koho objednavku pise, “szlovak” zijuci v Prahe?

    • Julius Szabo says:

      Ahoj Peter, nejde o žiadnu manipuláciu s citmi a ani o žiadnu objednávku článku. “Szlovák” žijúci v Prahe sa po 8 rokoch vrátil minulý rok do Košíc a web traveltipy.com je jeho, píše si tu čo chce a ako chce, doteraz iba pozitívne a článkov o Slovensku je tu najviac (http://www.traveltipy.com/in/countries/central-europe/slovakia/). Až keď mu začali na ulici rúbať 1300 stromov, napísal tento článok. Muž v riečke som ja, bolo to jediné miesto, kde sme sa mohli v lete schladiť, v tieni stromov, bez stromov to žiaľ už nepôjde. Keby som vedel, že všetky tie stromy vyrúbu a že túto fotku použijem na tomto webe, nafotil by som to účelovejšie, tak aby bolo vidno celé koryto aj so stromami po bokoch.

      Ak by som mal nulový vzťah k tejto krajine, nevrátil by som sa sem a akékoľvek rúbanie a iné devastujúce zásahy do našej prírody by som ignoroval. Pravda ale je, že nerobím rozdiel medzi Slovenskou a inou prírodou, kľudne by som napísal aj článok o tom, jak sa rúbu tropické pralesy na Madagaskare kvôli palmovému oleju. Nikdy som tam však nebol a tak len tieto články čítam od ľudí, ktorí tam boli.

      Hromada stromov je z toho čo už narúbali (výrub ešte neskončil). Volavka sedí na strome, ktorý tam už nie je. Druhá volavka je zakrytá stromami, ktoré tam už nie sú. Tieto fotky mali ukázať život v tejto rieke, letiace kačky a labute som zatiaľ nafotiť nestihol, musel by som hodiny na okne vyčkávať s foťakom v ruke. Ani nemám nahraté zvuky, ktoré z týchto stromov v noci v lete vychádzajú. Ak máš rád prírodu, fakt by si čumel jak péro! Tiež som nenafotil množstvo hniezd, ktoré na tých stromoch boli (resp. nafotil, ale na fotkách nie sú dobre vidieť). Na porovnávacích fotkách zima/leto je jasne vidieť, že tam v lete bolo ešte kopu stromov, teraz (je zima, takže sú zimné fotky) ich tam nechali 3ks na jednej strane a 3ks na druhej strane (http://www.traveltipy.com/how-slovakia-destroys-nature/slovakia-destroys-nature1/). Na tejto fotke http://www.traveltipy.com/how-slovakia-destroys-nature/slovakia-destroys-nature9/ je ľavá strana už po devastácii, pravú stranu ešte len čaká rovnaká devastácia, preto tam stromy ešte sú. Musel by si to vidieť v lete a teraz, aby si to pochopil, fotky veľa neukážu.

      Iné, ani lepšie fotky nemám, keď som sa sem nasťahoval, netušil som, že to tu všetko vyrúbu, inak by som si tu urobil stovky fotiek. Táto “protipovodňová” úprava koryta robí z rieky odtokový kanál. Taký kanál už je od začiatku po celej dĺžke nad touto časťou rieky. Výrub nerieši problém s povodňami, povodne prídu a budú stále väčšie a väčšie. Pôvod je tu https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTyJHt8H3Ag&feature=youtu.be

      Toto opatrenie nie je jediné takéhoto druhu na Slovensku, takže ak chceš ešte zachrániť pár stromov (možno sa najbližšie chystá výrub na tvojej ulici a ani o tom nevieš), tu je petícia: http://www.ekoforum.sk/peticia/zive-rieky

    • Michal says:

      plne suhlasim s tymto nazorom

  6. Vladimír Heleši says:

    Puká mi srdce keď vidím niečo takéto. Keď vidím prírodu Slovenska teraz a keď spomínam aké to bolo keď som mal 10 rokov, nedá sa to porovnať. Za 10 rokov dokážu peniaze zničiť niečo, čo sa za peniaze nedá kúpiť a ani za 10 rokov vybudovať. Preto som sa rozhodol študovať ekológiu a spraviť čo sa dá preto aby som pomohol zachrániť aspoň niečo z toho čo som obdivoval ako malý chlapec. Príroda by nemala patriť nikomu a všetci majú právo na to aby mohli jej krásu obdivovať. Preto by sme mali robiť maximum preto aby toto právo nebolo odopreté ďaľším generáciám a prírodu pre ne zachovať.

  7. Martina Paulikova says:

    http://www.ekoforum.sk/peticia/zive-rieky
    And here is the response from citizens, scientists, environmentalists, fishermen – petition. It is in Slovak language yet. The petition will be publicly unveiled 11. 2. 2016 Bratislava.

  8. Juraj Holub says:

    Hi Julius,

    Thanks for taking the effort to write this blog post. It’s a tough one but even more important so. Last year I took a numerous bike/hiking trips and the sights I had a chance to witness were petrifying. In all corners of the country – from Male Karpaty, Velka Fatra to Vysoke Tatry. Piles of cut trees, deep tracks running through the forest, destroyed trails. It’s absolutely mental to see forests only as the resource of timber and treat it this way. Add in corruption and useless offices and you get what you’ve just described – the devastated environment as in the developing country. It’s heart-breaking.

  9. Zuzana says:

    I am proud of how simply but truthfully you expressed yourself and showed what it is happening. Bother? You do not bother anyone, stay strong and express what you need to tell. It is sad for me to see it, but if we do not express it at least express it than we might as well live like unaware and stupid beings. I hope it will open the eyes of many. Thank you for the article.

  10. Roman Vesely says:

    I am curious what was the original intention of this tree-cutting near Hornad. Isn’t frequent floods the thing and this is some preparation for blockades construction? I’m just asking – I live also in Kosice and spend large amount of time hiking in surrounding woods and hills, so seeing such photos makes me sad as well.

    • Julius Szabo says:

      Apparently only Ministry of Environment of the Slovak Republic knows what was the original purpose to cut these trees, Roman. I am sure, that no scientist approved this. Of course, there is a higher risk of floods that will be more and more frequent in the next years, but cutting these trees does not solve the issue. The problem is elsewhere. Check our FB page https://www.facebook.com/1somprotivyrubustromovnadjazerom/ and watch the video and other posts and links that we collected for further information.

  11. justRandomFella says:

    Sad but very accurate reading. Thank you for spending your time writing this because pressure from outside Slovakia is probably the only thing that works on this useless stealing bunch of politics. I used to visit this place on bicycle (Furča -> Heringeš -> Krásna n. H.). My heart and eyes are crying. Wake up Slovakia 🙁

    • Julius Szabo says:

      Thank you for your comment, I made this route on my bike several times last year and it’s really cool! Nice views from Heringes and even from Krasna to the eastern side.

      When I published a post about “The most beautiful places in Slovakia” where I mentioned that Kosice is the most beautiful city, Raši (the Mayor of the city of Košice) shared the post soon after publishing. I am wondering how long does it take him to share even this one.

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