Lagoa Council has alerted police authorities about the “illegal felling of medium and large-sized trees” along the municipality’s coastline, which it says has become “more and more frequent”.
Says the council, the “motivation behind these acts appears to be led by the desire to have uninterrupted views out to sea from the properties located in those areas”.
Describing the felling as “acts of destruction”, the council says it is concerned about how frequent they have become and how “the vegetation that grows to heights of over one metre” is particularly targetted.
“Pine trees seem to be the most affected tree species,” states the council, adding however that from what it has been able to observe, “no tree species are safe from this deplorable attitude”.
The destruction of trees has been registered in many parts of Lagoa, “particularly Paraíso-Vale Currais, Algar Seco, Alfanzina-Vale Figueira and near Leixão do Ladrão-Carvalho”.
Lagoa Council has already alerted the GNR’s environmental and nature protection service SEPNA and is now working on formal complaints.
Speaking to TSF radio, Lagoa Mayor Luís Encarnação said the “crimes are committed at night”, making it harder to identify the culprits.
“We don’t have concrete evidence about who commits these environmental crimes, so we have alerted SEPNA to ensure that the law is enforced,” he added.
Meanwhile, the council is urging the population to safeguard the protection of the municipality’s environmental heritage and urges everyone to learn more about the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
The 15th goal focuses on the need to “protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.”