Amendments to the bill on forest roads were discussed in the State Duma

On May 28, the State Duma held a working meeting of the Committee on Ecology, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection on the issue of received amendments, comments and proposals to the bill on forest roads. The Russian Timber Association was represented by its first vice-president Andrey Goncharov.

The insufficiency of forest transport infrastructure, and primarily forest roads, remains one of the pressing problems of forestry management. The Russian Timber Association has repeatedly raised the issue of their construction and proposed solutions. Dmitry Kobylkin, Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Ecology, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, noted that more than 9.3 thousand km of new roads are required annually, while construction of only 5 thousand km is planned for the next decade. The bill introduces clear rules to improve the accessibility of forests, which is critical for the effective management, protection and reproduction of forest resources.

The main comments to the Federal Law No. 501213-8 “On Amendments to the Forestry Code of the Russian Federation” concerned the need to determine the maximum parameters for the creation of such roads, establish criteria for making decisions on their construction, and develop a mechanism for using forests for the construction of roads outside the provided area . It was also proposed to include information about forest roads in the state forest register, forest plans of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation and forest development projects, as well as to determine those responsible for maintaining the constructed roads.

The adoption of the law will be an important step towards improving forest management, protection and restoration. The development of forest infrastructure will directly increase the effectiveness of measures to prevent and extinguish forest fires.