Norway’s Supreme Court started hearing the state’s appeal of a rare victory for those trying to save the country’s allegedly protected wolf population from the rifles of those who feel threatened by them. Some say the court decision may change Norway’s predator policies forever, or usher in more laws against them.
Ranchers, forest owners and some rural residents fear that zones set aside to protect wolves will be turned into nature preserves. The organization dedicated to protect wildlife, WWF, fears for the future of endangered species.
At issue is an appeals court decision that sided in favour of WWF, ruling that two of three measures allowing a wolf hunt in 2017 were invalid. WWF has long maintained that far too many wolves in Norway are hunted down and shot, and that two wolf packs in Hedmark should not have been eliminated in 2018.
“What’s at stake here is simply nature’s right to exist,” claims Karoline Andaur of WWF. Since the state had won the first round in court, it’s now up to the Supreme Court to rule on how the law was exercised. The proceedings are set to run for five days.