law on fire-ravaged regions
News, 30 October 2009
Environment Minister Tina Birbili has unveiled a draft law seeking
to prevent unauthorised development of eastern Attica areas damaged
by fires in August. The law, announced on October 26, abolishes what
the government calls "forest-killing" regulations and creates the infrastructure
(forestry maps and a forest registry) meant to protect ecosystems and
The primary measures to be introduced by the proposed bill include
a temporary suspension of all construction work in the affected areas,
even where building has been allowed so far, and sees to the establishment
of a three-member committee in charge of demolitions of unlicensed
The draft law also provides for the inclusion of all hitherto unregistered
fire-ravaged land into the land registry and suspends the current legal
differentiation between a "forest" and a "forested area".
The suspension will last until forestland maps have been finalised.
Exempted from this ban are legally built structures and those with
legitimate building licences issued before the fires.