Forests and sustainable forest management are essential in the transition to a green economy that would improve human well-being and social equity, while significantly reduce environmental risks and ecological scarcities.
In Europe, thanks to sustainable forest management, the forest sector already displays many of the characteristics of a green economy and has a great potential to contribute to bio-based low carbon economy through increasing provision of wood, non-wood products and ecosystem services in a sustainable way.
At the six and seventh ministerial conferences held in Oslo and Madrid respectively, Ministers underlined the need to enhance contribution and raise awareness about the role of forest in the process of transitioning to a green and bio-based economy. They also committed themselves to promote innovation, research, adaptation of education and training systems as well as promote social inclusion and equity in this context.
The current FOREST EUROPE Work Programme 2016-2020 promotes implementation of this mandate (specifically set by the Madrid Ministerial Resolution 1) through the proposed activities aimed at green jobs, education and training systems on one hand, and at enhancing long-term competitiveness of the forest sector on the other. To support implementation of the activities aimed at green jobs, education and training systems, Forest Europe sets an Expert Group, which should contribute to continuing efforts in identification of new skills and other requirements for green jobs in the forest sector. The Expert Group shall present their achievements and experiences at a workshop collecting possible pan-European recommendations serving as a base for further work and development of guidelines for the promotion of green jobs.
Second workshop to be organized within this thematic area should promote long-term competitiveness of the whole forest sector and its related value chain, highlighting the role of wood and other forest products and goods from sustainable sources, including innovative materials contributing to transition to green and bio-based economy.