Forestry and climate change
Forest management and climate change in Europe
April 21 - 23 2015, Białowieża, Poland
FAO has prepared two sets of guidelines - Climate Change for Forest Policy Makers and Climate Change Guidelines for Forest Managers - to support forest policy makers and forest managers respectively in responding to climate change challenges and opportunities. The guidelines for policy makers provide an approach to integrate climate change into national forest programmes in a participatory manner, to support forest-related responses to climate change and to achieve coherence with other sectors and national climate change strategies. The primary objective of the climate change guidelines for forest managers is to assist forest managers identify and prioritize options for adjusting forest management plans and practices in order to respond effectively to climate change. The options provided in the forest managers’ guidelines are useful for forests managed for production, protection, conservation or multi-purpose use, in the private and public sectors as well as for indigenous and community forest organizations. This guide is intended to be relevant to all stakeholders including those in other sectors, since the success of forest management actions in response to climate change will be influenced by other sectors and stakeholders.
FAO together with the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Poland and the the General Directorate of the State Forests of Poland held a workshop on Forest Management and Climate Change in Europe from 21 - 23 April 2015 in Białowieża. The aim of the workshop was to identify opportunities for the application/implementation of the guidelines in the European context. The workshop was attended by representatives from 9 countries and 2 regional bodies – the European Forest Institute and the European State Forest Association. Following presentations on the state of forests and climate change in Europe and the policy and management trends governing forests and climate change in the region, FAO presented its activities and approaches on Forests and Climate Change including the two sets of guidelines prepared for forest policy makers and forest managers.
Countries then presented their actions, priorities and needs related to Forest Management and Climate Change. This was then followed by group discussions where participants discussed common needs and gaps and identified priority areas where they requested FAO support. These may be summarized as:
- Awareness raising of climate change priorities for forestry among:
- Forest policy & decision makers, forest practitioners, other stakeholders supporting forest policy & management
- Support the integration of climate change into forest policies and forests into climate change policies
- Facilitate the communication of relevant information on forests and climate change to decision makers and practitioners
- Support capacity development on climate change within the forest sector (private, state, CSOs)
- Facilitate networking & promote partnerships for the exchange of information, experiences & technology within and across countries
- Provide information on climate change impacts, risks, challenges and opportunities for forests (thru FRA)
- Support research, information generation & dissemination