- Title: Estonians harvest Christmas trees with help of smartphone app
- Date: 20th December 2019
- Summary: (SOUNDBITE) (Estonian) FOREST MANAGER, JAAN PRANTS, SAYING: "People may cut Christmas trees in places where there is no hope for the trees to grow to maturity. Places like the sides of roads, edges of ditches, also under power lines and under older forest. It is forbidden to cut trees from places of forest rejuvenation, because those have been planted there by people." TREES IN FOREST SPRUCE TREES IN FOREST TREE BRANCH ROAD RUNNING THROUGH FOREST (SOUNDBITE) (Estonian) FOREST MANAGER, JAAN PRANTS, SAYING: "The service is used quite a lot. How many trees are cut in a certain year, of course depends on many different factors, for example, the weather is very important. But on average, it is about 10,000 trees." VARIOUS OF SEPP SETTING UP CHRISTMAS TREE IN THEIR HOME VARIOUS OF FAMILY DECORATING TREE CHRISTMAS TREE ORNAMENT
- Embargoed: 3rd January 2020 12:00
- Keywords: Estonia app christmas trees environmental protection environmental tech forest management illegal cutting mobile application tree conservation tree cutting
- Location: KURESSAARE, ESTONIA
- City: KURESSAARE, ESTONIA
- Country: Estonia
- Topics: Environment,Nature/Wildlife
- Reuters ID: LVA005BAS6IPL
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Ahead of the holiday season thousands of Estonians head to the country's forests to cut down and take home their own Christmas trees.
As well taking a saw or an axe, many may check a smartphone app to help them pick out the perfect tree.
In a country where almost all government services are available online, Estonia's state forestry company (RMK) developed the app allowing people to find and pay for Christmas trees all in one place.
Katrin Sagur, a resident of Saaremaa island, said she prefers going into the forest with her family to find a Christmas tree rather than buying one from a shopping centre.
Her partner Taavi Sepp agreed, saying the app would only be more convenient if it showed the exact locations of the trees, although he admitted it would be less fun.
RMK forest manager Jaan Prants said people can use the app to legally cut trees from places where they have no chance of growing to maturity, and can easily see areas where they are not allowed to harvest.
Prants said around 10,000 trees are harvested with the help of the app every year.
Trees can be bought through the app - with prices up to 13 euro ($14.40) per tree - until December 31.
(Production: Janis Laizans, Dominik Starosz)
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