Centralparks workshop in Pieniny National Park, Poland

On 28-30 June 2021, Centralparks ran another successful workshop. This time, it was called “Strategy for the protection of biological and landscape diversity outside and inside Pieniny National Park”. 

The event was held in Krościenko nad Dunajcem, Poland, and was attended by 20 participants. The Ekopsychology Society, together with the administration of Pieniny National Park, were the co-organisers of the workshop.

Current workshop in connection to the draft strategy

This workshop marked the next phase of implementation of the Centralparks pilot action in Pieniny National Park. This pilot action tests the efficiency of the draft Carpathian strategy for enhancing biodiversity and landscape conservation outside and inside protected areas.

The Centralparks team, alongside the three Thematic Transnational Task Forces, have together designed draft strategy back in 2019-2020 . This was done in support of the implementation of the Protocol on conservation and sustainable use of biological and landscape diversity (Bucharest, 2008) to the Framework Convention on the Protection and Sustainable Development of the Carpathians (Kyiv, 2003) at the local and regional level.  

The draft strategy targets local municipalities, protected area administrations, local and regional level nature conservation, and landscape protection agencies, as well as other relevant bodies and authorities. The Centralparks team has submitted it to the Secretariat of the Carpathian Convention on 7th May.

Pieniny National Park

Pieniny National Park was designated as a park in 1932. It forms the Polish part of the first European and World’s second transboundary protected area. 

The intention to designate such a crossborder nature park was inscribed into the Polish-Czechoslovak bilateral agreement, the 1924 ‘Krakow Protocol’. The protocol aimed at a) “concluding, as soon as possible, a tourist convention” to facilitate the development of tourism in border areas of both above countries, and b) “a convention on a nature park” establishing areas restricted for the protection of cultural heritage, nature and landscape. 

Both of these goals materialised over 80 years later. First, this happened with the adoption of the ‘Carpathian Convention’ in 2003. Second, it was achieved with the thematic Protocol on Sustainable Tourism in Bratislava, in 2011.

Centralparks pilot action in Pieniny National Park

The objective of the Centralparks pilot action is also to facilitate and support the dialogue between the Pieniny National Park administration and the authorities of the 4 local communities located in its buffer zone, towards ensuring the integrity of natural habitats and maintaining the fragile ecological connectivity between this relatively small protected area (2,371.75 ha) and neighbouring larger natural complexes in the Carpathians, increasingly threatened by the rapid residential and recreational housing development in the national park buffer zone (2,653.8 ha), which requires the joint solution of potential land-use conflicts in several ‘problem areas’, successfully identified during the June workshop.

Hence, the purpose of the Centralparks workshop in June 2021, attended by 20 participants (including the experts from Pieniny National Park, the Regional Directorate for Environmental Protection in Kraków, and the Board of the Landscape Parks Complex of the Małopolska Region) was to prepare a series of meetings with the local stakeholders in each of the 4 ‘gateway’ municipalities, planned for September and October 2021.

General gratitude

The Centralparks team would like to thank Mr. Michał Sokołowski, the Director of the Pieniny National Park, alongside other national park employees and workshop participants for their active participation in this event. 

The Centralparks team is also grateful to all the organising parties for their excellent guidance in the field visits.