Protective functions of forests in a changing climate: 70 years of European experience – World Forestry Congress side event

From: 02.05.2022 to: 02.05.2022

The European Forestry Commission (EFC) Working Party on the Management of Mountain Watersheds (WPMMW) was established in 1950 to promote sustainable development in mountain areas. Currently, Austria chairs the group and has put an emphasis on the protective functions of mountain forests in a changing climate.

Forests fulfil many crucial protective functions. They prevent erosion, foster healthy soils, act as water filter, prevent avalanche detachment, stop or slow rock fall and reduce the flood risk. These important ecosystem services have recently come under pressure, due to climate change effects and socio-demographic development. The EFC WPMMW collected 12 highly interesting and relevant country reports about protective forest policies and practices and published a comprehensive report in 2021. 

This side event, co-chaired by the EFC WPMMW, Mountain Partnership and the Federal Ministry for Agriculture, Regions and Tourism of Austria, sheds light on the important protective functions of forests, the different policy approaches, commonalities and challenges to address. The speakers include representatives from governments, administration and science, fostering science-policy dialogue. Following important questions will be addressed:

  • How do we sustainably and effectively manage mountain forests?
  • What are the responses to climate change in mountain forests?
  • How can we value ecosystem services of forests in policy and society?

Zoom details will be provided soon.

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Photo: ©Davide De Luca

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