About the role of the forests in the Paris Agreement at the COP23 summit

The role of the forests in the Paris Agreement is the leitmotiv of one of the side events accompanying the 23th UN Climate Summit held in Bonn.

Reducing carbon concentration and its sequestration by forests and soil underlie the Polish proposal related to implementation of the Paris Agreement. It has been included into the climate agreement in effects of the actions taken by the Polish delegation headed by Professor Jan Szyszko, Minister of Environment.

“The target of the Paris Agreement is to reduce the rate of carbon concentration increase in atmosphere. We must achieve it as fast, as cheap and as effective as possible. One of the ways to success is sequestration of carbon from atmosphere by living organisms such as soil and forests” – said Professor Jan Szyszko, Minister of Environment, during the side event in Bonn.

Reducing carbon concentration shall be executed among others under the Forest Carbon Farms (FCF) project. This concept has been developed by the Minister of Environment in cooperation with the State Forests.

“The concept of forest carbon farms enables us reaching the climate neutrality postulated by the Paris Agreement. This initiative can be successfully implemented throughout the world. In addition, we should emphasize that carbon sequestered by soil contributes to its regeneration, which in turn enhances biodiversity, prevents desertification and fosters more effective hunger tackling” – added Minister Szyszko.

About Forest Carbon Farms

The project aims at increasing carbon sequestration by the forests in effect of the additional activities taken in the forestry, including among others replanting young trees into the old ones. The methods for carbon sequestration determination and recording shall be enhanced in parallel.

The Forest Carbon Farms pilot project will be implemented by the end of 2026 in several dozens of forest districts in Poland. Apart from the forest areas, it will cover also peat bogs and wetlands being the natural CO₂ reservoirs, frequently of a greater impact on carbon balance than forest ecosystems.

Studies on carbon sequestration

Effectiveness of carbon sequestration by the natural systems was discussed during the Bonn event by Marek Urbaniak and Klaudia Ziemblińska, PhDs, Engineers. They presented the results of the studies performed by the scientific team of the Department of Meteorology of the Poznan University of Live Sciences. The studies cover the measurements of carbon exchange at the area of three forest research stations included into the Forest Carbon Farms programme.

The research areas are located within: the 65-years old pine forest (Tuczno station) and within the areas damaged by tornado in 2012 (Tlen I and Tlen II stations). 

Presentation on the Forest Carbon Farms was delivered by Tomasz Zawiły-Niedźwiecki, Professor, PhD and Deputy Director General of the State Forests.

“We must tackle climate change in different manners, not only by reducing the emissions. The Forest Carbon Farms project is one of the effective methods to do so. Here in Bonn we face a great interest in our initiative” – said Paweł Sałek, Vice-Minister of Environment, Government Plenipotentiary for Climate Policy.

The side event on the role of the forests in the Paris Agreement was held on 8 November 2017.


The 23th UN Climate Summit, i.e. COP23, is held in Bonn between 6 and 17 November. The presidency over this-year conference is held by Fiji. The top priority of the summit is to make progress in establishing the rules for implementation of the Paris Agreement. Their final adoption is scheduled for the UN Climate Summit taking place in December 2018 in Katowice. Polish delegation is headed by Professor Jan Szyszko, Minister of Environment.

More information on the COP23