Verkhovna Rada Committee demands an end to the destruction in Gorky Park
The Verkhovna Rada Committee on Environmental Policy has called on the Prosecutor General to check the legality of the decision by the Kharkiv City Council of 19 May to fell trees in Gorky Park. The Internet publication Glavnoye says that it has seen the relevant decision from the Committee. The latter stresses that if violations are discovered, those responsible must be brought to justice.
The Committee also instructs the Kharkiv City Council to:
1) note the need to observe environmental legislation when removing trees in the city and carrying out construction projects for a road or other structures in Gorky Park;
2) to suspend all work on constructing the road in question until a positive environmental impact assessment has been received, as well as a comprehensive State assessment of the working plan for construction;
3) suspend the tree-felling and ensure that the environmental protection requirements stipulated by the State Department for the Environment from 18.05.2010 are observed;
4) provide the Committee with confirmation of their revoking of the decision of the City Council regarding the land sites set aside for construction of a hotel complex and apartments;
5) pass a decision establishing time frames and allocation of resources to carry out restoration work on the territory by planting trees;
6) check the reinstatement value of 503 trees of different types and condition subject to removal and pay the real reinstatement value;
7) not allow any future work connected with removal of trees without the relevant permits, receipt of a positive environmental impact assessment, public hearings and measures informing the public via the media regarding the lack of adverse impact on the state of the environment.
The Ministry for Environmental Protection are in turn instructed to:
1) carry out an official check of the actions of the regional environmental bodies regarding agreements and conclusions on issues involving the allocation of land sites for construction; removal of trees, and other, concerning issues around the construction of the road. If infringements are found, those responsible must be held to answer;
2) take measures for unwavering observance of environmental legislation in constructing the road;
3) ensure a check into the legitimacy of the allocation of State acts give the right to permanent use of the land sites for the construction of the road.