The Bieszczady, Sanok-Turka and Przemyśl Piedmont Forests located in the Subcarpathian Voivodeship, often called the Carpathian Forest, belong to the last poorly transformed, extensive forest complexes of south-eastern Poland, and due to their natural values they are the most valuable forest area of the country, right after the Białowieża Forest. Rare species were found there, incl. arboreal species of bryophytes (e.g. Dicranum viride), 18 species of lichens (e.g. Parmotrema stuppeum), or 24 species of beetles (e.g. Zawadzki's runner), depending on the presence of dead tree wood. It is also the most important habitat for many forest birds, including 14 species listed in Annex I of the Birds Directive. In this area nest, among others, half of the Polish population of the golden eagle, and one-third of the Ural Owl and the Three-toed Woodpecker. This area is also a mainstay and an important migration corridor of the 'big four predators of Poland' (brown bear, wolf, Eurasian lynx and wildcat)  .
Several factors influenced the outstanding natural values of the Carpathian Forest. This area differs from the western Carpathians in the presence of relatively rich soils, which translates into a significant share of deciduous forests.
Before World War II, this area was extensively exploited, and as a result of the military and deportation operations of 1947 (the Operation Vistula), it was almost completely depopulated. During the times of the Polish People's Republic, a closed Recreation Center of the Office of the Council of Ministers was established there, with its seat in Arłamów (30,000 ha, with a fence of 120 km) as a hunting area for communist dignitaries. As these areas functioned for decades under low human pressure, their forest cover increased, mainly as a result of forest succession on former farmland .
In the 15 forest districts, with the best-preserved fragments of the Carpathian Forest, the only national park (Bieszczady NP established in 1973) cover only 29,200 ha, while 19 forest reserves cover 2,731.03 ha . In addition, there are numerous landscape parks and Natura2000 sites. However, such forms of nature protection are highly insufficient. Therefore, in the 1990s, scientists proposed two new areas for strict protection. The first is a fragment of the Przemyśl Piedmont, located mainly in the Bircza Forest District, where the 'Turnicki National Park' has been planned with an area of about 17,500-20,000 ha (check the map here , p. 78). The second area, which is a part of the Bieszczady Mountains, is adjacent to the Bieszczady National Park and is at the same time its buffer zone. It is proposed to enlarge this park by 40,918 ha (i.e. 73% of the entire buffer zone). This area will cover 96.8% of the Stuposiany Forest District, 81.1% of the Cisna Forest District, 43.1% of the Lutowiska Forest District and 5.5% of the Baligród Forest District (see the map here , p. 18).
Unfortunately, since 2004, with the amendment to the Nature Conservation Act, the creation or expansion of national parks was virtually blocked all over Poland. At that time, the provision giving the right of veto to local governments in this matter came into force. Such a provision was used by commune authorities in the case of the above-mentioned proposals  . They were not even convinced by the argument that the area planned for strict protection is practically uninhabited and doesn't include private property. There are reports of propaganda campaigns undertaken by employees of the State Forests and hunters in nearby towns. At convened rural meetings, false information is disseminated regarding the rigors resulting from the creation of the national park, for example, about the prohibition of entering and acquiring undergrowth. Half of the commune councils are foresters or their families. Sawmills use the wood they receive from the State Forests. What's more - people are convinced that if it is not possible to cut trees from the area of the planned national park, they will run out of firewood. This is not true, because only 10% wood from the surrounding forests goes to them. 90 % go outside the region. In response to this situation, the Natural Heritage Foundation was established in 2008, with the goal of creating the Turnicki NP .
The situation of the Carpathian Forest worsened with the implementation of the new Forest Management Plans (for the period 2015-2024 for the Stuposiany Forest District, or for the period 2017-2026 for the Bircza Forest District) . At that time, work on the construction of forest roads was increased, allowing entry of even the largest vehicles used to transport timber, and a very dense network of logging routes was created. This caused an increase in the intensity of the cuts. A type of felling is used there, which ensures the continuity of the cover but involves the elimination of the oldest trees. This entails a loss of the value of wildness. Cutting old stands also results in the disappearance of many species' sites. This mainly applies to rare saproxylic insects and cavities (birds or bats). Additionally, piles of wood waiting to be picked up become an ecological trap. Logging leads to the degradation of watercourses, affecting the presence of many protected species .
Already in 2015, 91 thousand signatures for the creation of the Turnicki National Park was collected as part of the SOS Carpathian campaign . In turn, on July 17, 2018, on the wave of success of the Camp for the Białowieża Forest, the Wild Carpathians Initiative was established by people who came from different parts of Poland, including the Carpathian region . It is a grassroots social movement organizing, inter alia, forest patrols, nature walks, educational meetings, which demands: the establishment of the Turnicki NP and a network of protected areas in the buffer zone of the Bieszczady NP, resignation from hunting in these areas and compensation for the costs of nature protection for local communities. In August 2020, an unusual protest was organized in the 'Las Bukowy pod Obnoga' nature reserve in the Stuposiany Forest District, which has been designed for 20 years. About 30 people, lying in hammocks stretched between the trees, blocked the forest work and the movement of machines . On April 25, 2021, in the Bircza Forest District, they installed several protest platforms on the trees with tents effectively blocking the entry to several forest divisions, set up an information point for interested passers-by, and hung up a huge sign requesting the creation of the Turnicki NP .
The blockade of logging, started in April 2021, has been going on for over a year. In one of the interviews, an activist from the Wild Carpathians Initiative said, "spending my time on the blockade, I focused on building relationships with the local community. So I had many opportunities to see how the inhabitants of the Przemyśl foothills react to the activists from the blockade. And I never experienced any unpleasantness. With the addition: "Just don't tell anyone"" .
The protests met with violence, repression, and criminalization. On August 14, 2020, activists from the Wild Carpathians Initiative were identified during the blockade of the entrance to the building of the Stuposiany Forest District. We received prescriptive sentences fairly quickly in connection with the violation of the Code of Offenses for Disrupting Public Order. Some paid small fines - the trip to the court from the other end of Poland was too burdensome. The others filed objections and the trial began in the court in Ustrzyki Dolne. After many months, the activists were acquitted. The foresters appealed to a higher instance. On March 7, 2022, an appeal hearing was held in the District Court in Krosno. The higher instance upheld the judgment of the District Court . On May 21, 2021, there was an attack on the Wild Carpathians Initiative tent camp. One of the masked attackers had a baseball bat. A female activist was injured and a car was destroyed (see picture in photo slide show). On July 29, 2021, activists blocked the entrance to the Bircza Forest District. The blockade was forcibly interrupted by the police. The forest inspectorate called the police, and after short talks, the policemen forcibly pushed the protesters away so that the employees could enter .
Activists are supported by people of culture and science from Poland. In January 2020, Olga Tokarczuk - a laureate of the 2018 Nobel Prize in Literature - appealed for the suspension of logging on a 30-hectare forest division at No. 219a, right next to the border with the Bieszczady NP . In this place, it is worth adding that in the winter of 2021, as a continuation of the Nobel Prize winner's appeal, a grassroots movement for the protection of the Carpathian Forest called ’She-Wolfs Collective’ (members wear wolf-like masks on their heads) conducted a protest in this area . On the other hand, in October 2020, over 230 scientists from the most important universities and institutes applied for ‘the cessation of harmful forest work in the most valuable forests of the Bieszczady Mountains and Przemyśl Piedmont’ .
In the context of global climate change, the Carpathian Forest is very important reservoir of organic carbon. This forest constitutes an extremely capacious water reservoir, which retains it after periods of rainfall and returns it to the local circulation. An important effect of the reduced water retention in the mountains will be deepening hydrological droughts in the basin of the Upper Vistula, resulting from the decreasing supply of mountain streams in dry periods. These functions are lost very quickly by logging .