Increasing timber theft in France causing ecological disaster

Increasing timber theft in France causing ecological disaster
Increasing timber theft in France causing ecological disaster Copyright Euronvision News Exchange
Copyright Euronvision News Exchange
By Euronews
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Authorities are tracking down the looters, who are responsible for ecological disasters by cutting down trees.

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Timber theft, a profitable business, is on the increase in French forests. The gendarmes of Yvelines are tracking down looters, who are responsible for ecological disasters.

A forest that existed just a few months ago has been nearly completely eradicated. In Septeuil, located in the Yvelines department, authorities have been probing into the theft of wood for more than a year.

The thieves cut the trunks themselves in the surrounding forests.

"The type of trees that have been cut down are the beautiful, healthy ones, and what's left are the thin, sickly ones", points out Gabriel Ducrest, commander of the Mantes-la-Jolie departmental company.

Good-quality wood from large oaks in protected areas is very profitable for thieves.

"We're talking about a loss of several hundred thousand euros from the dozens of plots of land that have fallen victim to this abusive logging", explains Gabriel Ducrest. 

The gendarmes suspect that a local logging company, legally hired to cut down trees on a plot of land, is behind the theft. The company has been cutting significantly more trees than originally planned, exceeding the boundaries of the authorised area.

The stolen trunks are then sold to China, where they are turned into parquet flooring.

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