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Violent dispute over forest management

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From: patrick eickhoff

pull apart

Heated discussions: The members of the environmental commission keep interrupting each other. The atmosphere is tense. ©Patrick Eickhoff

During a forest inspection with the Nidda Forest Office, members of the Bad Vilbel Environmental Commission had the opportunity to ask many questions about forest management. The new forest facility is already under construction. Not all participants agree on this.

It is still harmonious in the parking lot. Members of the Bad Vilbel Environment Commission, including representatives of the CDU, SPD, Greens, FDP and AfD, as well as BUND, NABU and Dottenfelderhof, listen to a welcome from Klaus Minkel, chairman of the meeting. “I am pleased that today we get some explanations from Bernd Reissmann and Eckhard Richter in the woods.” There he describes a »worst case scenario«. He has with him the forecast of the water balance of the Northwest German Research Institute site. With a global warming of four degrees, the forest would have to fight quite a bit. »There are areas where we are going to lose forest. But there are also trees that can withstand drought better.« That’s why you have to react appropriately in the forest.

The criticism comes from Heike Schloßhahn-Salomon. »If that is the basis of her work, then we no longer need forestry.«

Reißmann, who first has to ask Klaus Minkel to guarantee peace and quiet, firmly rejects this accusation. “That’s not right. If we don’t do anything, we risk losing entire forests.” That’s why tree species have to be brought in to secure the forest. He understands that there are different opinions, but asks to be allowed to finish speaking.

His wish is not granted. Participants then go into more detail about the forest facility. “It is currently being created. We expect a first draft in the fall,” said Reißmann. Forest management work is decided for the next ten years and is a kind of inventory. This includes, among other things, a general description of the forest areas and a plan for stock maintenance, timber harvesting and afforestation.

When it comes to logging, tempers boil a second time. Peter Paul (Greens) criticizes the fact that trees are removed from the forest with machines during the breeding and planting season. This is not good for birds and animals.

The responsible ranger, Eckhard Richter, himself an ornithologist and very knowledgeable about birds, says: “That is very rarely the case.”

participants grab each other

But then the Commission gets furious. Horticulturist Albrecht Denneler from Dottenfelderhof reports on working with draft horses. “Do we really have to use machines to remove the wood? I would have to invest in a new horse now.« There are these possibilities, you just have to talk about them. After all, he has also worked with a horse in the woods in recent years. Reißmann said that you can certainly talk about it, but that it takes more than just a horse.

Sabina Eberlein (Greens) and Heike Schloßhahn-Salomon jump on this train. The first believes that it is a very good idea, it just needs to be discussed in the commission and in the next meetings. “You can record that in the new forest facilities.” You can definitely find a way.

the forester is coming no more words

Schloßhahn-Salomon even sees this as the “end of the big articulated lorries”. The angry participants seem to forget that the commission only has an advisory role: the work will finally be approved by the magistrate and the city council. At this point, the two forestry experts can no longer speak. Then Klaus Minkel interrupts. This is too confusing for me. You have to decide. If you are in favor of the use of horses, you should also say yes to logging.« He considers it selfish that the people of Bad Vilbel do not want to talk about it. “There is only one world.”

Then the members of the commission go in two groups towards the trees. “We have a task here,” Reissmann said. Those present should reward the so-called trees of the future. They are trees specially adapted to the needs of the city of the future. “It needs room to grow, so we also have to mark the stalker,” explains ranger Eckhard Richter. Gunther Salomon (SPD) does not understand why the tree should be felled in the immediate vicinity of the “Tree of the Future”. “Both of them can stay side by side. It just takes longer for both of them to get fat. This is how the forest is ruined.«

Richter emphasizes that you work according to the “early, moderate, often” principle. »The canopy often closes faster than you think. It only lasts two years.” A tree without leaves would not shade anything.

Salomon vehemently disagrees. He shows the ranger photos on his cell phone and reports that the trees cast shadows. The former SPD mayoral candidate comments on a comment by Deliah Eckhardt (CDU): “At least I have a clue compared to you.” Rangers have made mistakes in recent years. »There is no such thing as a pure ash tree.« Karin Schmidt from NABU also speaks of a pure »forestry approach«. Richter makes it clear: “This accusation is not correct. The city of Bad Vilbel invests every year and does not make a profit here.« Reißmann added that the members of the commission could also verify this. ‘All numbers are given at the forest facility. He also says if the stock has increased.”

The forest walk ends after two hours.

wpa_PatrickEickhoff_2603_4c_1 © Patrick Eickhoff

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