Ministers encouraged the use of forests and wood to support sustainable development at Las2017, the Joint Session of the ECE Committee of Forestry and Forest Industry and the FAO European Forestry Commission, which took place in Warsaw, Poland from 9-13 October 2017. After a week of intensive negotiations, countries set robust goals to enhance sustainable forest management throughout the region in the next years and adopted the Warsaw Integrated Programme of Work (2018-2021).
The Warsaw Programme covers over 43% of the world’s forests, including almost 100% of the worlds’ boreal forests and the vast majority of temperate ones. The programme will be implemented in North America, Europe, Central Asia and Russia, which also all together account for 60% of the global industrial round wood production and related forest products.
Prof. Szyszko, Minister of Environment of Poland said, “Forests play an essential role in sustainable development. We are proud that Poland hosted this meeting which adopted the Warsaw Integrated Programme of Work. The document is a blueprint for our forests in the coming years and an important contribution to the Global Forest Goals, the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement”.
The Warsaw Programme covers four areas:
1. monitoring and reporting on the state of forests in the region;
2. policy tools to ensure that the sustainable management of forests in the region will contribute to international goals;
3. awareness-raising and dissemination of information on forests;
4. capacity-building and technical assistance, including through international cooperation, to countries in Eastern and South Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia.
The Warsaw Programme addresses issues such as forest landscape restoration and the Bonn Challenge, mitigation of and adaptation to climate change, the contribution of forests to a green economy, forest communication strategies and national systems for forest monitoring and statistical reporting.