Prof. dr hab. Urszula Myga-Piątek, Dr. Michał Sobala and Dr. Bartłomiej Szypuła from our Institute have tried to answer this question. Their study aimed to assess the degree of anthropogenic transformation of the natural landscapes in the entire territory of Poland and within individual national parks, as well as to determine the level of representation of these landscapes in national parks.
The results have shown that the distribution of the existing national parks in Poland reflects the degree of landscape transformation by humans and that landscapes closest to their natural state are protected. Almost all kinds of natural landscapes in Poland are protected in national parks. The exceptions are the Aeolian hilly landscape and Siliceous and aluminosiliceous – erosional landscape of single hills. These two kinds belong to very strongly and strongly transformed landscapes, respectively.
The method of assessing the degree of landscape transformation used in this study could be the basis for designating areas that should be protected as national parks. The research emphasizes the need to create new national parks in Poland, which occupy only 1% of our country’s area today.
The results were published in the “Journal for Nature Conservation”.
Myga-Piątek U., Sobala M., Szypuła B. 2022. Do national parks protect natural landscapes? Journal for Nature Conservation 68: 126229, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnc.2022.126229.