CZK 446 million will be spent on improving the state of forests by 2027, the government approved

CZK 446 million will be spent on improving the state of forests by 2027, the government approved

CZK 446 million will be spent on improving the state of forests by 2027, approved by the Vlaacute ;da

Illustration photo – Press conference after the government meeting, August 17, 2022, Prague.

Prague – As part of the EU's Common Agricultural Policy, CZK 446 million will be spent until 2027 on improving the environment in forests or preparing for climate change and forest protection. The Ministry of Agriculture (MZe) stated this in a press release, the support was approved by the government today. The money will come from European sources and the state budget. The government also approved new conditions that farmers must meet in order to be eligible for blanket subsidies, the so-called conditionality conditions. They relate, among other things, to farming on soils at risk of erosion, crop rotation or the prohibition of plowing grasslands.

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Support for measures in forests will be obtained by owners, tenants or tenants for the preservation of species diversity in forests or the protection of the gene pool. Deputy Prime Minister Marian Jurečka (KDU-ČSL) said after the government meeting that the regulation establishes support for changes in the species composition of forests, protection of rare stands or specific so-called habitat trees on which, for example, mushrooms and lichens grow, or insects and birds live in them. “It is in line with what our government coalition has clearly said. We care about maintaining species-rich forests and at the same time we care about the restoration that is necessary after the bark beetle disaster,” he added.

For example, subsidies to the gene pool will help finance the careful collection of cones and seeds from valuable locations, the genetic material will be used for planting of new forests, the Ministry of the Interior stated. Forestry and environmental payments will support 28,000 hectares of valuable stands every year.

The approved conditions of conditionality concern, for example, subsidies to improve the living conditions of animals in farms. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, farmers will also have to comply with anti-erosion measures, divide large fields with one crop into several parts or leave some fields fallow in order to provide conditions for different plant and animal species.

Jurečka said, that the purpose of the regulation is to take better care of land or water resources. He noted that there are more than 30,000 subjects engaged in agriculture in the Czech Republic, among which are family farms, medium and large enterprises. “It has been discussed for quite a long time, it is not an easy topic. If we are really serious about better care for the landscape, it is necessary to move forward,” he said. “This year, for example, they can also grow production crops on fallow fields. Also, the obligation to rotate crops on one field is postponed until 2024,” said Minister of Agriculture Zdeněk Nekula (KDU-ČSL).