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The role of forests in achieving sustainable development and combating climate change

Forests are the most efficient way to sequester carbon, and forest products provide materials that are often much more carbon friendly than other alternatives.  Properly managed forests and forest products have great promise in helping countries achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Moreover, the global need for sustainable products and industries could transform and strengthen the forest products industries in the UNECE region. Debates at the 74th session of the UNECE Committee on Forests and the Forest Industry (18-20 October) will be centred on understanding and maximizing the role of wood in sustainable development and how to work with other sectors in realizing wood’s potential for the transition to a green economy.

Representatives from governments, the private sector, research, academia and other stakeholders from across the UNECE region (Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia and North America) will come together in Geneva to discuss the current state of affairs regarding forests and the many products from forests that benefit society (register here). With the signing of the Paris Agreement and the adoption of the 17 SDGs contained in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the role of forests in contributing to achieving sustainable development and combating climate change has never been more clearly linked with the work of the United Nations. The Committee will specifically discuss:

  • The linkage between UNECE region forest ownership and how these forests are managed.
  • The current economic situation and developments of the various forest products industries in Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and North America.
  • The emerging challenges and opportunities for forest products businesses in the region as perceived by their top managers.
  • The limiting factors which are preventing a higher use of wood in construction (given its strong credentials as a building material and in particular a renewable and sustainable material) and how these could be overcome.

For more information please visit: http://www.unece.org/forests/coffi74.html#/