Misuse of right of public access

At present national law protects private property in nature areas, which probably constitutes a best environmental practice (BEP) in this field. Right of access to nature areas, whether private or public, adopted initially by some countries as part of general public rights, constitute nowadays a serious threat to natural ecosystems and is quite ofter abused.

Discussion: http://www.economiaynegocios.cl/noticias/noticias.asp?id=470824

Unrestricted right of public access to nature areas including areas in private property and mountain regions, adopted by some countries mainly in Northern Europe, is commonly known as “everyman’s right” or “freedom to roam”. Recent developments on global level (population growth) show that it can be easily abused and, with the exponential expansion of global consumption industry, especially of consumption of recreation, nature and wildlife tourism and other “natural” products, presents hight risk and important pressure for natural ecosystems, wilderness areas and wildlife.

Only a limited number of countries provide a right of unrestricted access to nature areas, whether in public or private ownership, allow people to roam, the recreational use of nature areas, nature-based tourism, and collection of natural products. Conditions and limitations of the right to roam are difficult, if not impossible, to enforce. It is being challenged at present for the above reasons.

The right to roam adds to the steadily increasing pressure on protected

areas worldwide. Countries allowing open access to all types of

nature areas experience more pressure on their protected areas.

Increased pressure on national local parks

In a globalised world the right to roam has a significant potential

for abuse by foreign business, not benefiting local communities

for whom this right was initially secured as this right applies to everyone.

Damage to nature is usually done by occasional consumption-oriented

visitors. Goods are now seldom used where they are produced.

Examples from countries which are known for protecting public

access more than nature: 


Public access rights, or so-called everyman's rights, refer to the right of everyone in Finland to enjoy outdoor pursuits regardless of who owns or occupies an area.

Berry picking in summer by massive number of foreign workers, either in State or private forests, profit mainly to foreign compagnies, and constitute serious pressure on the habitat of native wildlife.


Searching for antlers in forests (private or public) after a difficult winter kills many animals by disturbance and harassment, as well as recreation activities like skiing. Antlers are then sold to Asian countries.

Human pressure is much more damaging than climate change -

La biodiversité en danger en Suisse: "une crise plus grave que celle du réchauffement climatique".

Winter sports and trekking are in particular harmful to wildlife who is trying to survive winter in a saving mode -

Wildlife disturbance and winter recreational activities.pdf

Danger du tourisme d'hiver.pdf

Intense pressure on protected areas

Pressure on protected areas,              


01.2018 -April 2019