Environment not on Election Agenda

This pre-election eco-questionnaire was to be answered within 10 days. Only three parties replied, including Platforma Obywatelska (The Civic Platform).As reported by Dziennik, Greenpeace wanted to target the most valid issues concerning the environment today. All parties were sent the same questionnaire asking, for example, what each party would do to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Po

land or whether nuclear power was on the agenda for the country. Only the Women’s Party, the Greens and PO replied to the questions. According to Dziennik, PSL’s (Polish Peasant Party) Member of Parliament Stanislaw Zelichowski, when asked why the questionnaire was not attended to, replied: “I am busy with the election campaign. All information regarding the environment is on the PSL Internet web site.” Zelichowski was once a forest ranger and the Minister for the Environment.

Other responses verged on the ridiculous. When Dziennik talked to the SLD (Statute of the Democratic Left Alliance) Member of Parliament, Wladyslaw Stepien claimed he had filled out the questionnaire but forgot to send it. He did state that he had been interested in nature since being a young boy. “I used to take my girlfriends to the Vistula, to the forest or the meadows. And there I would encourage them into pro-family politics (laughs). I would put the environment as third most important issue, after the economy and the health care system” in Poland he claims. If SLD was to win he adds “We will promote a healthy lifestyle so that young men will take their girlfriends out to the meadows and not out for chips.”

This absurd approach to such an important issue, which dominates political agendas of the west, is an indication how far Poland still has to go where the environment is concerned. Maciej Muskat, a member of Greenpeace summed it up for Dziennik: “Polish politicians have indicated that fundamentally they are not with the EU.” He added “This could not have happened in any Western democracy – whereby politicians totally ignore their electorate despite environmental awareness and concern being on the rise.” Turns out that P

iS misplaced its questionnaire and could not find it in time. While Krzysztof Bosak, Member of Parliament for the LPR (League of Polish Families) told Dziennik: “Lets not kid ourselves that Western politicians claim concern for the environment that they actually care about it. They are claiming concern only because it is in fashion at the moment. They do not have bigger issues on hand. We at least have pro family values politics.”Should the trend of such political mind frames continue in Poland, there is little hope for the Polish environment indeed. The Greenpeace questionnaire also targeted issues such as the Rospuda Valley and the tragic environmental mess that the Baltic sea has become.

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