Protecting old growth forests in Europe - a review of scientific evidence to inform policy implementation

Lyla O'Brien, Andreas Schuck, Cecilia Fraccaroli, Elisabeth Pötzelsberger, Georg Winkel, Marcus Lindner
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The study reviews scientific literature on the topic of old-growth forests and held a workshop with around 20 external scientific experts in February 2021 to discuss preliminary findings. The experts also had a pivotal role in reviewing and commenting on previous drafts of the study and helped to jointly create key messages throughout the report together with the study’s authors. Key messages cover the following aspects of old-growth forests

  • Defining old-growth forests
  • Evidence of old and old-growth forests in Europe
  • Approaches to protect old-growth forest and to maintain and develop old-growth attributes
  • Associated benefits, consequences, and potential trade-offs of old-growth forest protection and management and development of old-growth forest attributes
  • Policy implications

This study was published in June 2021.

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Recommended citation:

O’Brien, L., Schuck, A., Fraccaroli, C., Pötzelsberger, E., Winkel, G. and Lindner, M., 2021: Protecting old-growth forests in Europe - a review of scientific evidence to inform policy implementation. Final report. European Forest Institute.

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