Main Article Content
In 2012, a survey analysing the local community knowledge of respective components of the natural environment within the borders of Smołdzino Commune was conducted. The survey covered 3% of the commune inhabitants. The chosen administrative unit is a region of a high environmental value – the Slovinski National Park, which is listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, covers 60% of its area. However, the local government fails to notice an opportunity of the commune development through its unique environmental features, and considers them to be an impeding factor, as demonstrated by a dispute with the Treasury (over the lost income), and insufficient pro-ecological investments. The local government attitude contributed to the fact that almost half of the surveyed could not evaluate the condition of the respective environmental components. The surveyed failed to notice a relation between the state of the environment and their comfort, and standard of living. Almost 25% of those questioned believe that they are not affected by the environmental issues. However, approximately one third of the inhabitants of Smołdzino Commune is interested in the local environment condition. The above mentioned group is familiar with the environment characteristics and recognises their impact on the standard of living. About 20% of the surveyed emphasise a good condition of air, water, and nature. The commune development is related to its location and unique environmental features.
Key words: Smołdzino Commune, coastal environment, ecological awareness