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What impact has the Renewable Energy Directive had on EU forests?

The EU Renewable Energy Directive was launched in 2009 to great fanfare and the promise that the EU would fulfil at least 20 per cent of its total energy needs with renewables. Few could have guessed that
a policy intended to help the EU meet climate goals would lead to vast increases in the burning of wood, degrading forests in Europe and beyond.
PDF icon Full report489.12 KB
PDF icon Report summary310.81 KB

Arctic Limits: How Finland’s forest policies threaten the Sámi and the climate

Finland is a test case in the fight against climate change. As the world edges closer to breaching the Paris Agreement goal of keeping global temperature rises below 2 degrees, forests have become increasingly important in discussions around how to battle climate change.

PDF icon Arctic Limits_Final.pdf1.77 MB

The most crucial challenges facing Europe’s forests

This short briefing outlines BirdLife, European Environmental Bureau and FERN recommendations for the Parliament’s own initiative report on the EU Forest Strategy.

NGO participation in the rural development policy

Forests cover more than 42 per cent of European Union (EU) land, almost as large an area as is covered by agricultural production. Most support for forest practices in the EU comes from Rural Development policy, the second pillar of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

On paper, the current Rural Development Regulation requires consultations to take place at different levels (known as the ‘partnership principle’). In practice however, the input of stakeholders can still be improved.

PDF icon OPEN1.42 MB

The lack of coherence between national rural development programmes and EU environmental commitments

The European Union (EU) is signatory to several environmental commitments, including the Göteborg commitments to reserve biodiversity decline by 2010 and the Kyoto Protocol targets for climate change mitigation. These commitments should be supported by EU policies such as the Rural Development Regulation. This briefing note looks at the expected effect of six EU Member States’ rural development programmes, and finds that, all too often, they are likely to undermine rather than support the EU’s environmental commitments.

PDF icon OPEN1.55 MB

Is the rural development policy supporting good forest management and biodiversity conservation?

The European Union’s (EU) Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is the largest EU source of support for forest practices. This money sits under the Rural Development pillar of the CAP and the policy which guides this funding is the Rural Development Regulation (RDR). This briefing note considers whether the RDR is contributing to good forest management and biodiversity conservation by looking at both afforestation measures and Natura 2000 (forest) payments of six countries.

PDF icon OPEN1.92 MB

Rural Development Regulation fails to meet EU targets

The environmental quality and health of European forests is declining, and an increasing number of forest-dependent species are now endangered as a result of poor forestry practices. However, the new Rural Development Regulation for 2007–2013, which could be used to help prevent this biodiversity loss, looks set to miss the mark, as shown by research in this FERN - TRN Briefing Note.
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How EU taxpayers money gets lost in subsidising the forestry sector

Europe's forests receive huge subsidies. In 13 countries assessed, over 8.6 billion EUR of public funds were spent on forestry programmes during the period 1990-1999. This briefing examines the allocation of public funding to forestry programmes within Europe. This briefing is a summary of the FERN/ TRN report: EU subsidies for forestry practices during the 1990s
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Forests of the Czech Republic

This briefing note, on forests of the Czech Republic, is part of the series of briefing notes about the forest situation in the new Member States. Authors: Michal Rezek - FSC Working Group Czech Republic, Zuzana Stroufova - Hnuti DUHA (Friends of the Earth Czech Republic), Jaromir Blaha - Hnuti DUHA (Friends of the Earth Czech Republic).
PDF icon OPEN276.09 KB

Forests of Estonia

This  briefing note, on forests of Estonia, is part of the series of briefing notes about the forest situation in the new Member States.  Author: Jaan Parn, Estonian Green Movement.
PDF icon OPEN255.16 KB