A joint position paper edited by Birdlife European Forest and Agriculture Taskforces. This document is an outcome of the FTF response to the stakeholder consultation carried out in the late summer of 2004 on the implementation of the EU Forestry Strategy, as well as meetings between FTF and Forest units of DG Agriculture and DG Environment in June 2005. Its recommendations reflect recent advances in forest ecology and population biology, based on decades of monitoring and research on the fluctuations of forest species and the quality of their habitats.
Forests are arguably our most important ecosystems. They host a huge share of world biodiversity, play crucial roles in the regulation of climate and the water cycle, and provide many other ecosystem services. Forests also provide safe, renewable and recyclable products. Their benefits have also been recognised in the European Commission’s new biodiversity strategy adopted in May.
To mark the convergence of the International Year of Biodiversity (2010) and the International Year of Forests (2011), ACE and BirdLife have teamed up to exchange views and explore ways to enhance progress on forest biodiversity, through an enhanced dialogue and joint research projects detailed in this report.
Against The Grain - Improving the management of NATURA 2000 sites and other forests in the EU (PDF, 1,6 MB)
The key problem addressed in this book is that the concept “sustainable forest management” has remained a neat-sounding catchphrase with too little unspecified content, often hardly distinguishable from normal commercial forestry. The gradual loss of biodiversity in European forests, reported by the European Environmental Agency, as well as the failure of EU to reach the 2010 target of halting biodiversity loss, indicate that neither “biodiversity-friendly” forestry practices nor NATURA 2000 conservation measures are implemented well enough to have sufficient positive effect on forest ecosystems.
This book raises crucial questions: how much protected habitat is needed to prevent from further loss of forest biodiversity; how to identify forests of key biological importance and what are economically and ecologically justified ways to manage them? In order to address these issues, we made an attempt to redefine “good forest management”. In second part of this book we present selected case studies of “good forestry practices” as well as address some key problems related to the management of forested NATURA 2000 sites, such as clearcuts and improper post-disturbance management.
The publication in pdf format can be downloaded by clicking on the lroink above. Short presentation based on the content available here.
Europe’s forests need better protection. Although among the richest ecosystems for wildlife, most European countries sufficiently protect at most a few per cent of their forests. Many of these protected areas are located on poor soils or in remote highlands, where species diversity is lowest. Commercial forestry practices remain mostly too harsh to allow specialist bird species and other forest biodiversity to survive.
This book provides an ecological assessment of the need for forest protection in northern and central parts of our continent, where the most valuable natural forests still can be found, and proposes a six-steps strategy for bringing Europe’s forest conservation to ecologically sustainable levels.
FTF’s e-newsletter presents the work of BirdLife Partnersin Europe on forest issues.
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