New call for forest monitoring study

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EFI is offering an opportunity for its member organisations to carry out a forest monitoring study, in a new call launched today.

A grant of 200,000 EUR from the EFI Network Fund is available to member organisations, to fund a study to synthesise existing scientific research and develop a conceptual framework for a harmonised European forest monitoring system.

Forests are more than ever being recognised by policymakers as a crucial renewable resource for Europe. Forests are the most important provider of non-food and non-feed biomass, which is essential for the transition from a fossil to a circular bioeconomy. They are also of immense importance for biodiversity conservation, carbon sequestration and the provision of a wide spectrum of other ecosystem services which are key for a sustainable society. Simultaneously, as a consequence of climate change, forests are more than ever exposed to disturbances (e.g., forest fires, storms, pest and diseases), which requires targeted measures to strengthen their resilience and their ability to provide the above-mentioned goods and services.

Decision makers therefore face a challenging task to ensure that forests can continue to deliver wide-ranging ecosystem services, while maintaining and enhancing their resilience. The basis for any management and decision making should be reliable data, which adequately reflect forest conditions, and advanced decision support tools that can enable informed decision making.

In Europe, there is a wide array of forest information sources (from local to European level) but these are scattered and mostly rely on diverse data sets that are not easy to compare. Despite efforts to harmonize forest inventory data and the possibilities offered by the rapid development of high-resolution remote sensing methods, there is a lack of European-wide harmonized and robust information on forest resources and their conditions, which limits the possibilities for an informed policy development process and dialogue.

To support ongoing and future policy processes at the EU level and strengthen the role that forests play in these processes, a harmonized and robust reliable European forest monitoring system is needed, that can be updated and enhanced as new data, new technologies and new knowledge become available. The system must efficiently integrate different data sources and help to overcome difficulties of data inconsistency.

The deadline for the call is 30 March 2021 at 21:00 UTC.

To read the full call text and access the other related documents, see here.

Photo: ©bymandesigns, Adobe Stock