EuroNatur Award 2016

Champion of forest protection

© Gerald Jarausch
Romanian forest conservationist Gabriel Paun receives the EuroNatur Award 2016. © Gerald Jarausch

 

On 12 October 2016 Romanian biologist Gabriel Paun received the EuroNatur Award 2016 on Mainau Island (Lake Constance). For many years, the founder of Romanian nature conservation NGO Agent Green has been fighting with every possible personal effort to protect the Carpathian old-growth forests.

There are hardly any primeval forests left in Europe. As the one EU Member State where more old-growth forests survived to date than anywhere else, Romania currently still harbours about 60% of the continent’s remaining old-growth forests (excl. Russia). But this unique natural treasure is dwindling away: Over the past ten years, vast areas of these more than 6000-year-old forest ecosystems have been destroyed. Many of these primeval forests have been cut down illegally. For years Gabriel Paun has been uncovering alarming cases of forest destruction and exposing them to the public for years.

 “By giving this year’s EuroNatur Award to Gabriel Paun, we send a clear signal for the protection and against the destruction of Europe’s last primeval forests. We are honouring his courage in uncovering the scandalous deforestation and his braveness in fighting a seemingly insuperable opponent,” states Christel Schroeder, president of EuroNatur, on the reasons for selecting this year’s laureate.

 


Acceptance speech of EuroNatur laureate Gabriel Paun

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Speech of EuroNatur president Christel Schroeder

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Laudation of Jörg Nitsch, member of EuroNatur's presiding committee

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