Key biotorps

Charlie Taylor

Unclear legal situation regarding registration of key biotopes
In Sweden, about 2% of the productive forest land consists of registered key biotopes. In addition, there are of course areas with high natural values ​​that have not been registered and that could be subject to registration in the future. The fact that an area is registered as a key biotope typically has far-reaching consequences for the individual forest owner in the form of difficulty in selling the timber, notification obligation, etc. Despite this, there is currently considerable uncertainty as to whether the registration of a key biotope is a management decision. formally occurs independently of registration at high natural values. Whether it is a management decision or not is completely decisive for whether the individual forest owner has the opportunity to appeal the registration. Various chamber courts have come to conflicting conclusions on this issue and the legal situation is therefore anything but clear.
The Court of Appeal in Stockholm
The Court of Appeal in Stockholm has, with reference to the registration’s action-directing effect, considered that it is a question of an administrative decision. The Court of Appeal refers, among other things, to the fact that an owner of a key biotope-classified forest must comply with special provisions concerning the management of the forest, and that the forest owner may in certain cases be convicted of a crime or issued injunctions or prohibitions, which can be combined with a fine if he does not comply. This, together with the design and content of certain documents that the Swedish Forest Agency provides to landowners when they register a key biotope, means that the Administrative Court of Appeal has considered that it is clear that this is an administrative decision. The Court of Appeal in Stockholm further considered that the decision was subject to appeal. The Court of Appeal further found that the Swedish Forest Agency in the individual case had not had support in the legal system for registration of the key biotope in question. However, this had to do with the registration taking place after the government’s assignment to the Swedish Forest Agency ended.
The Court of Appeal in Gothenburg
The Court of Appeal in Gothenburg has in an earlier case come to the exact opposite conclusion, ie. that it is not a question of an administrative decision. The Court of Appeal in Gothenburg makes the assessment that the consequences that a key biotope registration normally gives rise to, e.g. difficulties in selling the timber (which is regulated by private law through the certification rules) and requirements for special consideration and notification for consultation (which follows from the Forest Management Act and the Environmental Code) are a consequence of the area being a key biotope. This in turn is a consequence of the natural values ​​that exist in the area and not the registration the registration only makes visible the considerations that must already be taken into account due to the high natural values.

The future?
For the individual forest owner, the opportunity to harvest is of course of crucial importance. It is also difficult for the individual forest owner, and for the person who is to buy the timber, to make an assessment of the natural values ​​themselves. On the Swedish Forest Agency’s website, it can be read that the authority itself considers that special competence is required to make such an assessment. In practice, therefore, the registration of a key biotope should be decisive for the possibilities for felling in many cases. It remains to be seen whether the Supreme Administrative Court (HFD) will grant review in the first-mentioned case, as leave to appeal was not granted for appeal by the Court of Appeal in Gothenburg judgment. It also remains to be seen whether HFD will in that case try the question of registration of key biotopes, or whether the court will confine itself to examining the question of whether the Swedish Forest Agency had support in the legal system to carry out the registration. Hopefully, both issues will be tried so that both forest owners and the Swedish Forest Agency get clarity on whether the registration constitutes an administrative decision or not. // Bachelor of Laws Mathias Möller The post Nyckelbiotorper first appeared on Centrumadvokaterna AB.

Click to rate this post!
[Total: 0 Average: 0]
Next Post

Highlights of the Week: Bitcoin and Ethereum Slide as Mastercard Expands Cryptocurrency

A slight crash sent Bitcoin price down to $39,638 on Friday, according to CoinMarketCap. The world’s favorite cryptocurrency, at the time of writing, was trading near $38,319.73, down 4.13% in 24 hours — about 10% cheaper than last weekend. Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency, was trading at $2,641.85 — 3.79% […]
Highlights of the Week: Bitcoin and Ethereum Slide as Mastercard Expands Cryptocurrency

Subscribe US Now