Academic journal article Current Politics and Economics of Russia, Eastern and Central Europe

Tourism and Recreation in Polish National Parks: Formal and Legal Conditions

Academic journal article Current Politics and Economics of Russia, Eastern and Central Europe

Tourism and Recreation in Polish National Parks: Formal and Legal Conditions

Article excerpt

Introduction

Tourism is seen on the European continent as one of the economic activities with most significant potential to generate future employment and increase in gross domestic product of EU (Commission data 2007). The tourism industry currently produces more than 5% of EU GDP. At the same time taking into account the related tourism sectors, it turns out that the overall share of tourism in gross domestic product of more than 10%. At the same time more than 12% of all jobs in the EU are connected with tourism (Communication from the Commission 2010). Tourism is also an important part of the Polish economy. Its share in the GDP has remained at around 6%. Approximately 5% of the total working population are employed in the tourism sector (Development programme 2010). Tourist activity is one of the indicators of the level of life and indicator of civilization development of societies. Its development helps to generate new jobs, business development, improve the quality of life of local communities, increasing the competitiveness of the regions, activation of both urban and rural areas. However, like any manifestation of human activity and so tourism can be a source of many environmental risks. Negative phenomena associated with the development of tourism include, among others, increased pressure on the areas of natural and cultural heritage. The threat from tourism increases in areas particularly attractive in areas of mass rest, when often there is a failure to comply with established standards permissible load of tourism. The government document Fri. "Directions of Tourism Development to 2015" stated inter alia that the tourism economy becomes a threat for themselves, because the effective functioning of the needs of ecosystems, which are clean, valuable natural and original, characterized by uncommon qualities. In general, what is the point of view of the biggest tourist attraction is also the most valuable natural or cultural, requiring special protection. Hence, a very important issue for tourism development is to maintain a balance between the expectations and preferences of tourists and the possibilities of the environment. The development of tourism in a sustainable way is particularly important, given the fact that currently in Europe, the number of visitors to areas of natural value is rising. According Coccossis et al. (2002) 1994 years, these areas were the place of destination distillation for about 40 - 60% of the tourists. Tourism in protected natural areas is currently 7% of all international tourist expenditure.

One of the valuable natural areas are the national parks, which are due to its unique natural values of the place very interesting for visitors. In Poland, the national parks in accordance with the Act of 16 April 2004. Nature Protection (Official Gazette 2004 No. 92, item. 880) include areas of outstanding value for the environmental, scientific, social, cultural and educational, with an area of not less than 100 ha, which is subject to the protection of all nature and landscape values (Art. 8.1.). The national park is one of the ten forms of nature protection provided by Polish law. It is created in order to preserve biodiversity, resources, formations and elements of inanimate nature and landscape values, restore the proper state of resources and elements of nature, reconstruct distorted natural habitats, habitats of plants, animals or fungi. Creating or increasing the area of the national park covering areas that represent the property not owned by the State Treasure, with consent of the owner, in the absence of the consent, in the mode of expropriation set out in the Act of 21 August 1997 on real estate (Art. 7.1.). In contrast, elimination or reduction of area of national parks occurs only in case of irretrievable loss of natural and cultural values of its area (Art. 10.1 paragraph. 1a.). In areas bordering with the national park a buffer zone of the national park is designated (Art. …

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