More than a quarter million dirhams in fines were issued in Sharjah this year for the unlawful cutting of protected trees and other environmental offences.
The Environment and Protected Areas Authority handed out 28 fines of Dh10,000 each to people and companies who had razed soil, damaged vegetation, and logged trees.
People were penalised for cutting down perennial, or long-living, and non-perennial trees of national and environmental importance – under Executive Council Resolution No 39 of 2016, regarding the prevention of environmental degradation.
Authorities in the emirate have intensified their campaign against individuals and companies that destroy natural resources through harmful practices.
Chairwoman Hana Al Suwaidi said the authority took such offences seriously.
“The issuing of these fines emphasise our position on violating the provisions that have been put in place to protect the environment," she said.
"Harming these environments causes a deterioration of wild areas and negatively affects visitors.”
Ms Al Suwaidi said it was necessary to protect local plants and trees, as these are considered national treasures.
The authority replanted local flora in their natural habitats and carried out numerous campaigns last year to raise awareness on the importance of preserving the environment.
Through its work, the authority seeks to protect Sharjah's natural reserves, wildlife and their biodiversity backed by scientific studies and research.